Fisher passed away on Tuesday (December 27), with many Hollywood stars taking to social media to pay their respects with touching tributes. Martin attempted to honour the actress with a tweet of his own, but has since removed it after a massive online backlash that deemed his comments sexist.
The now-deleted tweet read: "When I was a young man, Carrie Fisher was the most beautiful creature I had ever seen. She turned out to be witty and bright as well."
Many fans expressed outrage at Martin for objectifying Fisher, with New York Magazine going so far as to ask the comedian to "Please be better than Jabba the Hut." The accompanying article goes on to cite a recent interview in which Fisher rejects the "sex symbol" label and urges new Star Wars leading lady Daisy Ridley to "keep fighting against that slave outfit."
Remember Carrie Fisher for her talent, her feminism, her commentary on mental health — not for the way she looked https://t.co/R3eZqy6Ooh— New York Magazine (@NYMag) December 28, 2016
Among those leaping to the defense of Martin are a lot of grumpy old men like Piers Morgan.
If you were upset by Steve Martin's tweet about Carrie Fisher, congratulations! You are officially addicted to outrage.— Peter Cook (@_Peter_Cook) December 28, 2016
Now, seek help.
I'm going to be pissed off all day because people bullied Steve Martin into deleting a tweet about his friend, Carrie Fisher.— New Years Desolation (@BloatedCarcass) December 28, 2016
There were also some more measured responses to Martin's tribute, though.
Yes, Carrie Fisher fought against Princess Leia's sexual objectification. No, there was nothing wrong w/ @SteveMartinToGo's tribute to her.— Toula Drimonis (@ToulasTake) December 29, 2016
Know what Carrie Fisher would say about Steve Martin's tweet? I'm guessing she'd smile and say, "thank you." You know, like a normal person.— HSSawakening (@HSSawakening) December 28, 2016
Since removing his Twitter tribute, Martin has yet to comment on the controversy. Below, find a screenshot of the original tweet.