Blogger recalls playing Princess Leia at Disney

Katie McBroom, a former employee of The Palm Beach Post, played Princess Leia at Walt Disney World in 2006. She now resides in New York City where she runs her blog, Martinis and Mascara.

"We'd like to try you for Princess Leia, so go get the buns on and come back in with this ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ monologue." 
This direction is one of my most vivid memories of my first audition at a popular Florida theme park you might have heard of. (Hint: It rhymes with Smisney.)
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I quickly channeled my inner Carrie Fisher and "you're my only hope"ed it to the best of my ability. Miraculously, I got the part. In subsequent months, I studied not only the character, but also the woman who iconized the role. And I grew to love her.

Like many of her fans, I knew Carrie first as Princess Leia, but she was so much more than that. She was awesomely feminist and outrageously outspoken in the best way.

A mental health advocate. A fiercely courageous human being. A fighter.  
So, when I got the opportunity to meet her two months ago at Comic Con in New York, I didn’t think twice.
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I wish I could tell you that I said something really profound when I saw her. I had imagined telling her that if it weren't for her iconic portrayal of Leia (and her younger self's likeness to my younger self), I wouldn't have had one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Instead, I'm pretty sure what my star-struck self blurted out was, "Oh Carrie, I love you!"

We talked for a few minutes before she grabbed my face and hugged me tight and we snapped one of my now favorite photos of all time. 
And when she died Tuesday, I grieved her like I knew her.
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That woman truly owned who she was and never apologized for it. And although it's been years since I got paid to imitate her, I find myself continuing to channel my inner Carrie for that reason. I hope that one day I can master the role of unabashedly owning who I am, "flaws" and all, as she did.

Until then, may the force be with you, Carrie. 

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