Tony Dyson, the special effect expert known for building the Star Wars' robot R2D2, has been found dead at his home in Malta on Friday (4 March). Dyson had not been seen for some days before his body was found in the house he owned on the Maltese island of Gozo.
Police found Dyson after friends alerted them that he had not been seen by any of them for a number of days. There is no suspicion of foul-play.
Dyson was 68-years-old and had been living in Malta since the early 90s. He took part in a number of comic book conventions where he spoke about creativity and talked to fans from around the world. He was a guest at Malta's own Comic Con in 2015.
Speaking to Malta Today, Malta Comic Con organiser, Christopher Muscat, remembered Dyson as "one of the friendliest guests we've ever had," adding "When we actually met we were all surprised by his energy. Joking and smiling to all. He insisted on taking photos with everyone. We lost not only the creator of an Icon but a legend himself."
Along with the iconic R2D2 robot, Dyson worked on a number of other film projects including Superman ll, Moonraker and Dragon Slayer, in which he worked on a giant, robot dragon. In the Bond film Moonraker, he built 36 model spacemen for a scene, each with their own backpack, laser gun and spacesuit.
A Facebook page, Tony Dyson - In Memorium, has been set up and is sharing pictures and memories from Dyon's life, as well as inviting fans to do the same. The page describes Dyson as "all-round technical genius and mad as a box of frogs!"