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Meet Billie Lourd, heir to Reynolds, Fisher dynasty

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 31/12/2016 Cara Kelly

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It can be hard to follow in the footsteps of successful parents, but 24-year-old Billie Lourd has been doing it with aplomb. The actress is the daughter of the late Carrie Fisher, and as she's joked to many a late night and morning host, she's also the progeny of another movie icon.

"She always gets so upset that people call me Carrie Fisher's daughter. I'm Debbie Reynolds' granddaughter," Lourd quipped to Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford on Today earlier this month.

Billie Catherine Lourd, left, and Carrie Fisher arrive at the Governors Awards at the Dolby Ballroom on Nov. 14, 2015, in Los Angeles. © Jordan Strauss, Invision, via AP Billie Catherine Lourd, left, and Carrie Fisher arrive at the Governors Awards at the Dolby Ballroom on Nov. 14, 2015, in Los Angeles.

Now she's better known as Chanel #3 from Scream Queens, and a budding star in her own right. Though with the tragic passing of her mother and grandmother back-to-back, she's also become the last legacy of a Hollywood dynasty. 

Here's a look at the young talent's life and career. 

Her father is a Hollywood big-wig

The women in her family may have been in the spotlight, but her father, Bryan Lourd, is one of those important men behind the scenes, or as Kotb says, the agent in LA. He's the managing director of CAA, which has a roster that includes George Clooney, Scarlett Johansson, Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence... you get the idea. 

He married his longtime partner, Bruce Bozzi Jr., in October. (Bozzi's family started the original Palm steakhouse.)

She's a fresh face in the Ryan Murphy universe

Lourd joins a bevy of actresses who've had seminal roles in hit productions by TV mastermind Ryan Murphy, including Sarah Paulson and Lea Michele. Lourd stars alongside Michele, Emma Roberts and Abigail Breslin in Fox's Scream Queens, an anthology in its second season that follows a cast of characters being terrorized by a serial killer. The all-star cast is rounded out by Jamie Lee Curtis, John Stamos and Taylor Lautner. 

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She's more than an on-screen love interest for a famous werewolf

The cast and crew have said they've grown to be like family over the last two years. But Lourd and Lautner's relationship looks to be a lot more intimate. The two were caught kissing on Scream Queen co-star Kiki Palmer's Snapchat account at a wrap party for the show in early December. And the actor was by her side leaving her Santa Monica home Wednesday, hours before the death of her grandmother. 

She's a modern-day feminist

In a conversation with Murphy for Teen Vogue, the actress praised the writer / director / producer for creating the Half Foundation, which has a mission of ensuring that women and minorities make up at least 50 percent of the directors on his shows. She went on to explain how Fisher taught her to think without the confines of gender. 

"She raised me to not think of men and women as different. She raised me without gender. It’s kind of the reason she named me Billie. It’s not about being a strong woman — it’s about being a strong person. She once told me, “I never sat you down with a credo. It was more about leading by example.”

Pursuing acting was an act of rebellion

Her family, particularly Reynolds, tried to dissuade her from pursuing a career in acting. Reynolds sat her down and made her read diaries from her days on set about the costs of the gig.

“‘Dear Debbie, you’re sitting in the makeup chair, you have no eyebrows, you’re a shell of yourself, and it’s 5 am. How did you get here?’" she recounted to Vanity Fair about the diary passages. “Her advice would be to keep true to yourself and don’t lose yourself. Or your eyebrows.”

She plays a part in the Star Wars franchise

Lourd auditioned for The Force Awakens, the 2015 edition to the series that made her mother a legend, without telling her family. She landed the small role of Lieutenant Connix, which she'll reprise in Episode VIII. 

While on set in London, the first she was ever on, she tried to blend in with the other extras until one day she checked on her mother, who had a cold, and her cover was blown.

Gary originally belonged to her

Lourd is reportedly taking care of Fisher's French bulldog, Gary, but she's also his original mom, she told the Today show. She's mom to a Frenchie named Tina as well.

She'll star alongside Roberts and Ansel Elgort on the big screen in 2017

Along with Suki Waterhouse and Taron Egerton, Lourd and the young crew will bring to life the dealings and drama of two real Harvard School for Boys alums in Billionaire Boys Club, currently in post-production.

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