If you're a fan of kitschy teen horror series Scream Queens, then you'll know that there's much more to Billie Lourd (aka. the fluffy earmuffed Chanel No. 3) than just her starry Star Wars heritage. As the series arrives on E4 for a second season, here's everything you need to know about the actress, whose career is about to take her to the stratospheres...
Who are Billie Lourd's parents?
As the daughter of Star Wars legend Carrie Fisher (aka Princess Leia) and talent agent Brian Lourd, and granddaughter of actress Debbie Reynolds and musician Eddie Fisher, Billie is bona fide Hollywood royalty. Despite her starry heritage, though, her family weren't so keen upon her following in their footsteps. 'The one thing they'd all say my whole life was "The last thing you want to be is an actress,"' she told Vanity Fair this year. 'They wanted me to be a doctor, a CEO, a trashman. Basically anything but an actress.' Naturally, then, she became an actress - although she majored in religion and psychology at New York University beforehand, graduating in 2014.
Her parents split up when her father came out as gay, and left Fisher to be in a relationship with another man. Billie recently attended his wedding to long-term partner Bruce Bozzi Jr, Instagramming a sweet congratulatory message after the ceremony.
How old is Billie Lourd?
Born in California on 17 July 1992, Billie is 24 years old.
Billie Lourd in Star Wars: The Force Awakens
For a first acting gig, the long-awaited re-boot of one of the most popular sci-fi franchises of all time certainly isn’t bad. A born and bred Star Wars fan (because, obviously), Billie managed to snag a role alongside her mother in The Force Awakens. When her casting was announced, internet rumourmongers began speculating that she would be playing the young Princess Leia in a flashback sequence, but Billie’s role turned out to be very different. In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo, she plays Lieutenant Connix, an officer who is part of Leia’s army of rebels. As a nod to her mother’s iconic Leia buns, she wears her hair in a similar style -j ust one of the super-fan ‘easter eggs’ which director JJ Abrams dotted throughout the film.
'I've known Billie since she was six or something,' he told E! News. 'So to see her, I can't believe she's this young woman who's clearly going into the stratosphere.'
While Connix only gets one line (addressing Leia with the question, ‘General, are you seeing this?’) in The Force Awakens, Billie has already implied that her character’s time will come in the franchise’s next instalment. Describing her part in the seventh film as ‘a little Where’s Waldo-y’ to Slash Film, she confirmed that she has been working on Episode VIII, and will ‘maybe’ have some more scenes with her mother. We’ll have to wait until December 2017 to find out, though, as her character certainly won’t be featuring in this year’s anthology film, Rogue One.
Billie Lourd in Scream Queens
Fresh from filming The Force Awakens in London, Billie was cast as the devastatingly deadpan sorority girl Chanel #3 in stylish horror-comedy Scream Queens after meeting director Ryan Murphy at a family dinner. ‘I ended up sitting and talking with Ryan for two hours,’ she told Yahoo TV. ‘He asked me what I was doing with my life, and I told him I was giving acting a try […] He pitched me Scream Queens and I said, “I love it. It sounds like such a genius idea. It’s hilarious. It’s dark. It’s everything I want to be.”’ Now returning for season two, Billie stars alongside Emma Roberts, Abigail Breslin and Keke Palmer.
Part of Scream Queens’ OTT fun is in the endless stream of co-ordinating pastel outfits sported by the Kappa Kappa Tau sorority girls, and Chanel #3’s trademark is a pair of fluffy earmuffs, another nod to Carrie Fisher’s iconic Star Wars hair. What started as a knowing visual joke was turned into a plot reveal by the show's creators. As showrunner Brad Falchuck told the Hollywood Reporter, 'There is a very specific reason why she wears them [...] The funny thing with that is that it didn't start as a necessity. It started as fun, and then once we had them and it looked great, it was like "Oh, we've got to give a good reason for it."'
Can we follow Billie on Instagram?
Unlike her mother Carrie, who is a prolific and characteristically outspoken tweeter, Billie doesn't have an official Twitter account. She does, however, post regularly on Instagram, so we'll let that slide. Follow her @praisethelourd for behind the scenes snaps with her Scream Queens co-stars and pictures of her beautiful French bulldog, Tina.
Which movies and TV shows can we see her in next?
Billie will return as Chanel No. 3 in the second season of Scream Queens, due to air later this autumn. She’s also joined the cast of real-life crime drama Billionaire Boys Club, which follows the case of a group of wealthy LA teens whose ‘get rich quick’ scam has deadly consequences. Appearing alongside a clutch of up-and-comers like Ansel Elgort, Taron Egerton and her Scream Queens pal Emma Roberts, she’ll play Rosanna, girlfriend to Jeremy Irvine’s Kyle Biltmore. There’s also the small matter of the as-yet-untitled Star Wars: Episode Eight, set to arrive in a cinema near year on 15 December 2017.