Carrie Fisher didn't realise her metal bikini appearance in 'Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi' turned her into a "sex symbol".

Carrie Fisher

Carrie Fisher

The actress become a permanent fantasy woman for men all over the world when she appeared on screen as Princess Leia in the revealing two-piece whilst chained as a prisoner to villainous slug-like alien Jabba the Hutt.

Carrie was totally unaware of the impact those scenes had on fans of the sci-fi franchise and she didn't realise the erotic power of her bikini until 10 years after the movie's 1983 release.

Speaking to the New York Daily News newspaper, she said: "What's funny is I wish I had known I was a sex symbol. That's so odd. Because I don't think that way. I don't look at myself even remotely that way. So that would have been hilarious, if I had the chops at the time ... I went from the only female in that series, and it wasn't a real sexual character, to all of a sudden, boom."

Carrie - who is reprising her role as Leia in 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens - says she was unaware of her feminine charms back then because she lacked self-confidence.

The now 59-year-old actress explained: "There are other pictures of women with t**s and looking sexy (in swimwear), like Bridget Bardot and Sophia Lauren, and then there's me in that bikini. I'm an extremely self-conscious and tense person ... I did not know that I was pretty. I just thought I looked OK and I could go out."

The bikini has become such a huge part of pop culture it even has its own Wikipedia page and has been referenced on TV shows such as 'Friends', 'Chuck' and 'Family Guy'.

The original clothing sold for $96,000 at a prop auction in October.

Carrie has previously confessed she has had sex with 'Star Wars' "nerds" she has met over the years - making their fantasies come true.

She said: "I certainly have, along the way, slept with a nerd. But I don't think I ever got anything out of it except the sex. It was probably good. Nerds will surprise you. They're way more enthusiastic. More bang with your buck."