Original trilogy make-up artist Stuart Freeborn has died at age 98, the BBC reports.
Freeborn worked on many celebrated films, including Stanley Kubrick’s Doctor Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey, but Star Wars fans will know him best as the man who created Chewbacca, Jabba the Hutt and Yoda. He famously based Yoda’s face on Albert Einstein – and himself.
StarWars.com writes more about his Star Wars contributions, as well as comment from George Lucas:
“Stuart was already a makeup legend when he started on Star Wars,” said George Lucas. “He brought with him not only decades of experience, but boundless creative energy. His artistry and craftsmanship will live on forever in the characters he created. His Star Wars creatures may be reinterpreted in new forms by new generations, but at their heart, they continue to be what Stuart created for the original films.”
Below the cut, a two-part documentary where Freeborn talks about his work.
This (soundless) documentary by Jeff Broz was shot on 8mm in Buttercup Valley during the filming of Return of the Jedi. It’s pretty nifty – you see most of the principal actors (and/or their stunt doubles?) at one point or another. (via)
Can you imagine anyone getting this close to a set on a huge movie like this today?
Bob Anderson, who did Darth Vader’s fighting in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, has died at age 89.
Anderson’s work on the Star Wars films was originally supposed to be a secret, but Mark Hamill outted him in a 1983 interview.
“It was always supposed to be a secret, but I finally told (director) George (Lucas) I didn’t think it was fair any more,” Hamill told Starlog magazine. “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 Black List is an annual vote that picks the best unproduced scripts circulating around Hollywood. Among the top vote-getters this year is Evan Susser and Van Robichaux’s ‘Chewie,’ which Movieline describes as “A satirical behind the scenes look at the making of Star Wars through the eyes of Peter Mayhew.”
Previous Black List selections that went on to be filmed include Diablo Cody’s Juno and Aaron Sorkin’s The Social Network.
The HDRoom’s Dan Bradley was another tech-oriented journalist invited to Lucasfilm’s Blu-ray junket. The first part of his report covers a few basics we’ve heard about from the other sites and Lucasfilm themselves. Part two focuses on Matthew Wood and sound mixing. And part 3 takes on, of course, the deleted scenes, special features and Dennis Muren.
Here’s one interesting bit:
In response to my question, Kayleen answered “You’ll have to wait and see! The Holiday Special is a challenge, but look for some Easter Eggs. What’s a Star Wars release without a couple of Easter Eggs?” I read into that as something pertaining to, if not the entire Holiday Special is hidden on these discs. These Easter Eggs are also what LucasFilm is referring to when stating the leaked bonus features are “incomplete.”
An additional Blu-ray inner sleeve depicts a scene from Droids, the animated cartoon revolving around the further adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO. Does that mean an episode of Droids or maybe something from the Ewoks television show is hidden as an Easter Egg? We’ll have to wait and find out on September 16, 2011.
I’ve always thought that the Holiday Special – or the less tedious bits of it, anyway – would make an excellent Easter Egg.