I found this on Yahoo news and being the Star Wars geek that I am found this story very interesting so I thought I would pass it on in case someone missed reading it.
Olympic fencer and movie sword master Bob Anderson appeared in some of film’s most famous dueling scenes — though few viewers knew it.
Anderson, who has died at age 89, donned Darth Vader’s black helmet and fought light saber battles in two of the three original “Star Wars” films, “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi.”
Anderson, who worked with actors from Errol Flynn to Antonio Banderas during five decades as a sword master, fight director and stunt performer, died early New Year’s Day at an English hospital.
Vader, “Star Wars'” intergalactic arch-villain, was voiced by James Earl Jones and played by six foot six former weightlifter David Prowse, but Anderson stepped in during the key fight scenes.
“David Prowse wasn’t very good with a sword and Bob couldn’t get him to do the moves,” said Anderson’s former assistant, Leon Hill. “Fortunately Bob could just don the costume and do it himself.”
The scenes worked beautifully, although Anderson, then nearing 60, was several inches shorter than Prowse.
Few knew of Anderson’s role until Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker, said in a 1983 interview that “Bob Anderson was the man who actually did Vader’s fighting.”
“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.”
He went on to become one of the industry’s most sought after stunt performers, fight choreographers and sword masters, working on movies including the James Bond adventures “From Russia With Love” and “Die Another Day”; fantasy “The Princess Bride”; Banderas action romps “The Mask of Zorro” and “The Legend of Zorro”; and the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy.
Fencing academy president Philip Bruce said Anderson was “truly one of our greatest fencing masters and a world-class film fight director and choreographer.”
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