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Anorak | Darth Vader dies: Star Wars fighter Bob Anderson was 89

Darth Vader dies: Star Wars fighter Bob Anderson was 89

by | 3rd, January 2012

star wars darth vader bob andersonDARTH Vader, was a composite blend of David Prowse (body – top image below) James Earl Jones (voice) and British Olympic fencer Bob Anderson, who played the ultimate film baddie in the Star Wars films. Bob Anderson, who wielded Darth Vader’s light sabre in two Star Wars films – The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi – has died. He was 89.

Bob Anderson was modest. The former Royal Marines who represented his country in fencing at the 1952 Olympics and acted as film fight director and choreographer on such films as Die Another Day, The Master of Ballantrae, The Princess Bride, The Legend of Zorro and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, was revealed by Mark Hamill (Star Wars’ goodie Luke Skywalker) who told Starlog magazine in 1983:

“It was always supposed to be a secret, but I finally told George (Lucas) – the director – I didn’t think it was fair any more. Bob worked so bloody hard that he deserves some recognition. It’s ridiculous to preserve the myth that it’s all done by one man.”

The one surprise is that fencing never took hold as craze. A swordsman is words still associated in the tabloids with sexual prowess and not skill with an actual sword. Perhaps if the International Olympic Committee moved with the times and had a lightsabre section (it already has the Epée, Foil and Sabre) the sport be more relevant (see also kebab carver). The Swoosh would add to the Lunge, Parry and Riposte, scoring points for striking an opponents while talking like an asthmatic and screaming “Neowoooomphzummm” as the weapon is wielded…



Posted: 3rd, January 2012 | In: Film Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink