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Rest in Peace: Kenny Baker

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His horror resume may be brief, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the passing earlier today of actor Kenny Baker, beloved worldwide for his portrayal of R2-D2 in the Star Wars films.

Baker’s niece confirmed his death to the BBC. Per his agent, Johnny Mans, Baker (born August 24, 1934, in Birmingham, England) had been ill for a couple of years and was being cared for by his nephew.

Baker became a household name in 1977 when he took on the role of the robot R2-D2 in the first Star Wars film. He went on to appear with Anthony Daniels’ C-3PO character in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, as well as the three prequels.

kenny-baker

He also appeared in Time Bandits (the actor’s favorite role, he told the BBC back in 2001: “The director Terry Gilliam’s such a nutcase, he’s so enthusiastic, you can’t help enjoy it. It was just a fun film to make.”) and Flash Gordon. His horror credits include a 1982 TV version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, 1960’s Circus of Horrors, and When the Devil Rides Out, which has been in post-production for some time. And in the fantasy realm there’s Labyrinth, Willow, and TV series “Prince Caspian and the Voyage of the Dawn Treader.”

As Mans said, “He will be sadly missed.” We echo his sentiment and leave you with a tribute from 20th Century Fox.

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