Jimmy Vee has been cast as “Star Wars” character R2-D2 following the death of Kenny Baker.
The Star Wars robot was portrayed by English actor Kenny Baker for the first six installments of the franchise, beginning with the original 1977 film A New Hope. Baker then served as consultant on the first of the rebooted Star Wars films The Force Awakens, which was released in 2015.
Ahead of the release of that film’s follow-up, The Last Jedi, later this year, Baker’s replacement has been officially confirmed. While Vee was cast as R2-D2 for the forthcoming film back in 2015, it has only now been confirmed that he has landed the role for the foreseeable future.
The Twitter account Oh So Small confirmed the news earlier today (February 14), with Vee commenting on the honour of taking up the famous role from Baker.
— Oh So Small (@OhSoSmall) February 13, 2017
“It’s been an absolute pleasure to have worked alongside the legendary Kenny Baker,” Vee said. “Kenny was a fantastic actor and taught me all the ‘tricks’ on how he brought R2-D2 to life which I will continue to portray in his honor. I’m so excited to be a part of the Star Wars universe and can’t wait for everyone to see what we’ve been working so hard on for the last year.”