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Actor Jeremy Bulloch, the first to play Star Wars bounty hunter Boba Fett, died Thursday at age 75, his official website reported. Bulloch played Boba Fett in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, and though his character didn't have much screen time, he quickly became a fan favorite. 

"Jeremy died peacefully on 17th December 2020 following health complications, including several years living with Parkinson's disease," the site reported. "He spent his final weeks in the wonderful care of staff at St George's Hospital in Tooting, close to the house where he and his wife Maureen had lived together for more than fifty years. Maureen and two of his sons, Jamie and Robbie, were with him during his final days."


















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An animated version of Boba Fett first appeared in 1978's infamous Star Wars Holiday Special, and the character now appears on the Disney Plus series The Mandalorian, though Bulloch wasn't involved in those productions. 

A representative for Bulloch confirmed the news, writing in an email, "Jeremy has been a client of ours since 1980. It's a very sad time."

 A family connection helped Bulloch land the role that would change his life. His half-brother, Robert Watts, was working as an executive producer on The Empire Strikes Back in 1979 when he had to find someone to fit in the Fett costume.

"He called his half-brother and told him that if the costume fit him, he had the role," StarWars.com reports. "When Jeremy Bulloch arrived and put on the costume, it fit him like a glove. George Lucas saw Bulloch as Boba and said, 'You look fantastic,' and thus, an iconic character of the saga was born."

In 2018, Bulloch wrote a thank you note to fans on his website, telling them he'd decided to stop attending Star Wars conventions.

"In 1979 I was called onto the set of Empire Strikes Back to play Boba Fett, and since that day it has changed the entire direction of my life in such a wonderful way," Bulloch wrote. "It has been a privilege to have had the opportunity to inspire so many generations of Star Wars fans. I have had over 20 years of traveling with my wife Maureen to some amazing countries and have met so many wonderful fans. Thank you all so much and we will miss you all. 'May the Force be with you always.'"

Boba Fett wasn't Bulloch's only role. He appeared in several James Bond movies and numerous TV shows, including Doctor Who, as well as acting in theater productions.

"Away from the screen, Jeremy was a talented footballer and cricketer," his site noted. "He also supported a number of charities including Great Ormond Street Hospital who saved his granddaughter's life. He was devoted to his wife, three sons and ten grandchildren, who all love him dearly and will miss him terribly."

Fans and friends remembered Bulloch on social media.

Actor Daniel Logan, who played Boba Fett in 2002's Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones, and voiced the character in the animated series Star Wars: http://xn--l8jb9a5f2d3e.com/index.php/Hulu_s_July_2018_Lineup:_Stephen_King_And_J.J._Abrams_Team_Up_On_Castle_Rock The Clone Wars, posted a tribute to Bulloch on Instagram.

"It brings me to tears to announce Jeremy Bulloch has (passed) away," he wrote. "RIP legend. I'll never forget all you've taught me. I'll love you forever. Conventions won't be the same without you. May the Force be with you always."
















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"RIP, Jeremy Bulloch. The original Fett," wrote one Twitter user. "His swagger and gunslinger stance made an otherwise small part special. Years ago, I exhibited at SDCC and they stuck me next to Jeremy's booth. It is a treasured memory having traded 'good morning' with my fav SW character every morning."


















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Another Star Wars actor, David Prowse, who played Darth Vader, died in November. Like Bulloch, Prowse played the role but didn't provide his character's voice.


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