Kenny Baker starred in the first six Star Wars films, from 1977 to 2005. Photograph: Rory Gilder/Rex Shutterstock
The British actor who played R2-D2 in the classic Star Wars films died today, age 81, after a long illness.
Kenny Baker was 3ft 8in tall, and became a superstar in 1977 when he first played the robot character. From the Guardian:
He went on to play the character in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, as well as the three Star Wars prequels from 1999 to 2005. He also appeared in a number of other much loved films in the 1980s, including The Elephant Man, Time Bandits and Flash Gordon.
His niece, Abigail Shield, paid tribute to her uncle. She told the Guardian: “It was expected, but it’s sad nonetheless. He had a very long and fulfilled life. He brought lots of happiness to people and we’ll be celebrating the fact that he was well loved throughout the world. We’re all very proud of what he achieved in his lifetime.”
The following email was sent today to the MIT community by President L. Rafael Reif.
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