A petition has been launched online in the hope of persuading Disney to make Princess Leia an official Disney Princess, following the tragic death of Star Wars legend Carrie Fisher.
At the time of publishing, over 31,000 people had signed the petition, which hopes to induct Fisher’s character to the ranks of Rapunzel, Ariel, Cinderella, Snow White and Princess Jasmine.
“After the tragic lose (sic) of Carrie Fisher, we feel that it is only fitting for Disney to do away with the rule that an official Disney princess must be animated and make Leia a full-fledged princess,” writes its creator Cody Christensen, from Cedar City, Utah.
“This would be a wonderful way to remember Carrie and a welcoming to one of Disney’s new properties that is beloved by millions.
“What we are asking is that the Walt Disney Corporation hold a full ceremony inducting Leia as the newest Disney princess as well as a special service in memory of Carrie Fisher.”
Speaking to Geek, Christensen said: “I started the petition because it was something that bugged me since Disney bought the property.
“Disney had princesses and Leia was a Princess. Then I found out that Disney had set rules for who could and couldn’t be a princess. With Carrie’s death, I think that it’s time to change the rules.
The Disney Princess merchandise and toy line emerged in 2009, following the movie ‘The Princess and the Frog’, which found Princess Tiana officially inaugurated alongside the likes of Belle and Snow White from classics like ‘Beauty and the Beast’ and ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’.
But to become an official princess, the character has to be the lead role.
“I actually have five daughters and there are constantly princess movies playing in the background,” Christensen went on.
“We are big fans of the current Princess line-up, but I think that Leia is a really strong, positive, awesome role model for my girls, and she would make a great addition.”
Once the petition was out there, fan artists quickly began their own renderings of Leia joining the Princess sisterhood.
Disney Princess Leia by bewareitbites pic.twitter.com/aA4xVPsQrz
— Sidney Tucker (@SidneyTucker666) January 4, 2017
Disney Princess Leia pic.twitter.com/WDiW3uOXlg
— Mike Brondbjerg (@mikebrondbjerg) December 16, 2015
Disney bought up the rights to Star Wars, and George Lucas’s Lucasfilm studio, in 2012 for just over $4 billion (around £3.2 billion today).
Once the petition has reached its 35,000 target, it will be delivered to Disney boss Bob Iger.
Fisher died on December 27, four days after suffering a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles.
Her death was followed two days later by that of her mother, the actress Debbie Reynolds.
A private joint funeral will take place in Beverly Hills today.