Bob Anderson Dies

Last Updated: April 29, 2012By Tags:

Bob Anderson, Olympic fencer, stunt man and sword master, died at age 89. During a career that spanned over fifty years and saw the death of the studio system and the advent of the blockbuster, Anderson worked with everyone from Errol Flynn to Sean Connery and Antonio Banderas. He gained the greatest notoriety for his work on the Star Wars trilogy in the seventies, though his role in key lightsaber fight scenes was kept under wraps, per George Lucas, until actor Mark Hamill broke the silence in a 1983 interview. “I didn’t think it was fair anymore,” Hamill said at the time. “Bob worked so bloody hard, he deserves some recognition.”

Anderson’s last major films were the Lord of the Rings trilogy, in which swordplay played a key role in many pivotal scenes. Director Peter Jackson wrote on his Facebook page yesterday: “It is rare, even within the film industry, that you get to work with a legend which was why I was thrilled when Bob Anderson agreed to come on board The Lord of the Rings as our sword-master. In fact, it took a while for it to sink in that I was going to get to work with the same man who had helped create some of cinema’s greatest fight sequences, from Star Wars to The Princess Bride. Bob was a brilliant swordsman and a gifted teacher; I will remember him as a wonderfully patient man, possessed of a terrific sense of humour. It was a privilege to have known him.”

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