Mark Hamill’s moving essay to Carrie Fisher: ‘It’s like we were a family’

Before “Star Wars” opened back in 1977, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher had no idea the impact it would have on the world.

The actors became super stars overnight.

That’s one of the stories Hamill shared in a tribute to the late actress in a guest column for The Hollywood Reporter.

Fisher passed away last week at the age of 60.

“I remember we were out on tour right before the movie opened,” Hamill wrote. “By the time we got to Chicago, there was a crowd at the airport. I said, ‘Hey look, you guys, there must be somebody famous on the plane.’ I was looking around to see who it might be. And then in the crowd I saw a kid dressed in a Han Solo vest. Then I saw girl dressed like Princess Leia. I said, ‘Oh my God, look, Carrie, there’s somebody dressed just like you. She’s got the buns on her head!'”

Hamill said he met Fisher over dinner in London before they started filming together. He was 24. She was 19.

He wrote that he expected working with her would be like “working with a high school kid.”

But he said it was completely different.

“I was just bowled over,” he wrote. “I mean she was just so instantly ingratiating and funny and outspoken.”

“She had a way of just being so brutally candid. I’d just met her but it was like talking to a person you’d known for 10 years.”

Hamill said humor is one of the things that bonded them together.

“I would do crazy things to amuse her on the set,” Hamill said. “Making her laugh was always a badge of honor.”

“Part of what was so poignant about her was that she was vulnerable, that there was this glimmer of a little girl that was so appealing and it roused the protective nature in my personality.”

Hamill said he is grateful that he remained friends with Fisher and they got the opportunity to work together again with the new “Star Wars” movies.

“I think it was reassuring to her that I was there, the same person, that she could trust me, as critical as we could sometimes be with each other,” he wrote. “We ran the gamut over the years, where we were in love with each other, where we hated each other’s guts.”

Hamill said Fisher was far from perfect.

“She was high maintenance,” he said. “But my life would have been so much drabber and less interesting if she hadn’t been the friend that she was.”

“We went through it all,” Hamill wrote. “It’s like we were a family.”

*Click here to read Hamill’s entire tribute to Fisher