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January 04, 2012  | by: Ethan Feldstein

Bob Anderson

Olympic fencer Bob Anderson, who performed the famous fight scenes in “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Return of the Jedi” has died at age 89.

Darth Vader, arguably one of the greatest movie villains, was originally voiced by James Earl Jones and played by the six foot six weightlifter David Prowse.

“David Prowse wasn’t very good with a sword and Bob couldn’t get him to do the moves,” said Leon Hill, Anderson’s former assistant.

Anderson used his fencing skills during the key battles, which Prowse was unable to perform.  It wasn’t until a 1983 interview where Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker, revealed that Anderson was the man who did all of Vader’s fighting.

Anderson was born in Hampshire England in 1922 and took up fencing at an early age.  It was a passion that led him to teach in the Marines, become a coach, and later represent Britain in the 1950 and 1953 Olympics.

He will be remembered for his elite in stunt performing and fight choreographing.  He appeared in James Bond films, The Zorro movies, and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy to name a few.

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