Kenny Baker, British actor, Died at 81


Kenneth George “Kenny” Baker was born on August 24, 1934, and died on August 13, 2016.
He was an English actor and musician.
Kenny Baker was best known for portraying the character R2-D2 in the highly successful Star Wars science fiction movie franchise.
He stood 3 ft 8 in (112 cm) tall.
Kenny was born and educated in Birmingham, Warwickshire, and at boarding school in Kent.
Baker was the son of Ethel, a pianist, and dressmaker, and Harold Baker, an artist, musician, and draftsman.
Kenny’s parents were of average height.
Baker went to live with his father, step-mother and half-sister in Hastings, Sussex, and in 1951 was approached on the street by a woman who invited him to join a theatrical troupe of dwarves and midgets, which was his first taste of show business.
Baker, later joined a circus for a brief time, learned to ice skate and appeared in many ice shows.
Kenneth had formed a successful comedy act called the Minitones with entertainer Jack Purvis when George Lucas hired him to be the man inside R2-D2 in Star Wars in 1976.
He appeared as R2-D2 in six of the episodic theatrical Star Wars films and played an additional role in 1983’s Return of the Jedi as Paploo, the Ewok who steals an Imperial speeder bike.
Kenny was originally going to play Wicket, but he fell ill and that role was handed over to Warwick Davis.
He was featured on Justin Lee Collins’s “Bring Back Star Wars”. He revealed a feud between him and his co-star Anthony Daniels.
Baker claimed Daniels had been rude to him on numerous occasions and states that Daniels is rude to everyone, including fans.
His other films include The Elephant Man, Time Bandits (also with Jack Purvis), Willow (also with Purvis and Warwick Davis), Flash Gordon, Amadeus and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth. On television, he appeared in the British medical drama Casualty.
Kenny Baker also had a part in the BBC production of The Chronicles of Narnia.
He lived in Preston, Lancashire.
Kenny was married to actress Eileen Baker, they had 2 normally grown children.
Kenny Baker passed away at 81 years old.