Simon Pegg has had a long and colorful career, rising to stardom through small indie comedies before becoming a part of many blockbuster franchises, including Star Trek and Mission Impossible. During an interview with Vanity Fair, the actor spoke about his experience playing a small role in The Force Awakens.
"I started going down to the set and I got all my makeup design and met everybody, and being around that set was just amazing for me as a fan of Star Wars growing up, 'cause it felt very much like the Star Wars I grew up with. And, of course, Carrie Fisher was there, and Mark Hamill, and Harrison Ford, and these are the people that I idolized as a kid, and so, to get to be hanging out with them was a real dream come true. I had such a huge crush on Carrie Fisher when I was a kid... My first sort of stirrings of romantic love was for Carrie Fisher."
In The Force Awakens, Simon Pegg played the role of Unkar Plutt, the Crolute who we see trading with Rey for portions on Jakku, and who had in his possession the Millennium Falcon that Rey eventually stole. Pegg specially requested the role because he had been a fan of the franchise since childhood, and it was a thrilling opportunity to work alongside the power triumvirate of the original Star Wars trilogy, Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher.
Pegg treasures his memory of interacting with Carrie Fisher on the sets of The Force Awakens. Fulfilling the fantasy of a generation of fans who dreamed of professing their love for Princess Leia to her face, Pegg took the opportunity to reveal to Fisher the extent of his feelings for her.
"I got to spend a little time with her. We had a lovely day when we sort of wandered around the set of the Resistance base together, arm in arm, and we were just [laughs] sort of chatting, and I turned around, we were looking at each other, and I was looking into her eyes and it was like the same eyes, you know [laughs]. It sounds really obvious to say it, bit it was like I was looking into those eyes that had so, sort of, captivated me as a kid. And I said, 'You know, I've always loved you.' And she grabbed my hand and looked at my wedding ring and said, 'F**k you.' [Laughs] It was the best day of my life."
Fisher's response might not suit Princess Leia, but Pegg looks back on the encounter as one of the best experiences of his life. Sadly, the actress passed away a year after The Force Awakens released. She had finished filming her scenes for the sequel, The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker also saw Fisher reprising her role through the use of unused footage from The Force Awakens.