A Look At The VFX Behind Princess Leia And Grand Moff Tarkin In ‘Rogue One’

The biggest surprise when we sat down to watch Rogue One: A Star Wars Story last month wasn’t Darth Vader — we all saw him in the trailer — but the return of Grand Moff Tarkin and Princess Leia. Peter Cushing, who portrayed Tarkin, passed away over 20 years ago and Carrie Fisher, who portrayed Leia and passed away last week, was only 19 years old in the original Star Wars film — yet there they were on the big screen, just as they looked in 1977. Well…almost.

In this segment from ABC News, watch how the talented visual effects artists at ILM recreated the Tarkin and Leia of 40 years ago using different actors with CGI animated faces. The result wasn’t perfect — as evidenced by the complaints of expert filmgoers on the internet — but it was a hell of a lot better than that scene in The Sopranos filmed after Livia died.