Freeborn, makeup artist behind Yoda, dies at 98

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Nick Maley, a makeup artist who worked with Freeborn in the 1970s, called him a mentor who “ran his department like a headmaster.”

“It was my years working with him that helped me learn how to think, how to solve problems, how to not take the most obvious path,” Maley said. “Everybody will remember him for `Star Wars,’ but he did so much more than that. No one should overlook the groundbreaking work he did on `2001: A Space Odyssey.’ That was really the forerunner of `Star Wars’ and used a lot of the same technology.”

Freeborn’s wife, Kay, died in 2012. Freeborn’s three sons _ Roger, Ray and Graham _ also died before him.

In addition to Michelle, Freeborn is survived by seven grandchildren and a number of great-grandchildren.

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Associated Press writers Nick Perry in Wellington, New Zealand and Derrik J. Lang in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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