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RUMOR: Disney May Retire Princess Leia's "Slave Outfit" From Merchandise

Just a few days after Carrie Fisher told "Star Wars" newcomer Daisy Ridley to "keep fighting against that slave outfit" comes a rumor involving the infamous/iconic look worn by Princess Leia in 1983's "Return of the Jedi." Making Star Wars has heard a rumor from an undisclosed source positing that Disney is considering retiring the "slave outfit" look from their merchandise.

While there's no evidence from Disney itself to confirm or deny the rumor, a few comments from Marvel Comics cover artist J. Scott Campbell posted in in a thread on Blake Northcott's Facebook page hint that there may be some truth to the rumor -- at least where the comics are concerned. In two comments, Campbell lays out what he's heard regarding the "slave outfit" and Marvel's stance on depicting Leia in it.

Leia has been a fixture of Marvel's line of "Star Wars" comics since their launch in 2015. The character had her own limited series from writer Mark Waid and artist Terry Dodson. That series had many covers and variants, none of which depicted Leia in the "slave" bikini. Campbell's own variant cover for "Princess Leia" #1 featured the character in a gown she wore in "A New Hope."

While Leia's "slave outfit" may be iconic, it's not without controversy. Some fans feel that since the look that is forced upon her by Jabba the Hutt when she becomes his prisoner -- and the fact that the costume has become known by the word "slave" -- it's inappropriate for action figures and merchandise. This controversy sparked up this past July when Philadelphia's Fox affiliate ran a story about a father furious about the toy being available in stores to purchase, saying, "I got two daughters I don't need seeing that crap."

Making matters more complicated is the general back and forth around Disney's treatment of female characters when it comes to merchandise. In 2014, the Disney Store's official Twitter account tweeted that there were "no plans for Leia products" in the store. That stance changed shortly after that in 2014, with Disney spokeswoman telling "Time" that Princess Leia would be included in the store's upcoming assortment of Star Wars products.

Disney came under fire earlier this year when asked about the role female figures will play in their toy lines. Hasbro initially said they felt "they have released plenty of female characters in the line" in an interview with Jedi Temple Archives before backtracking to list all the female characters they had already released. For many years, the "Slave Outfit" Leia was the only version of the character available in the "Black Series" line of figures -- and was also the only Leia figure available at some Disney Stores. That was recently rectified with the release of the line's Boushh Leia figure.

(via Toyland)

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