We got the sad news of actor Jason Wingreen's passing over the weekend, when his son Ned confirmed that the actor died on Christmas Day...
Jason Wingreen was the man behind the mystique of the bounty hunter Boba Fett, after voicing the character for Star Wars Episode V The Empire Strikes Back in 1980. Mr. Wingreen had initially auditioned for the role of Yoda before being offered the role of Boba Fett.
Boba Fett only had four lines in the movie, but they are every bit as important as the physical presence provided by Jeremy Bulloch on set. In fact I'd say Mr. Wingreen's lines might be the lines I quoted most as a young Star Wars fan, due to my obsession with the ice cool bounty hunter. Mr. Wingreen, who had said that the recording of the lines took all of ten minutes, was uncredited and never received a residual for his performance with his involvement only coming to light in 2000. Unfortunately, Mr. Wingreen's iconic Boba Fett dialogue was replaced in later editions of the film, by actor Temuera Morrison who played bounty hunter Jango Fett in Star Wars Episode II Attack Of The Clones . George Lucas felt he needed to retcon the Boba Fett character in Star Wars Episode V The Empire Strikes Back to tie into Star Wars Episode II Attack Of The Clones, where Temuera Morrison's Jango Fett was the "father" of a young Boba Fett. Boba was actually Jango's clone, and so would sound the same by the events of Empire.
I was never a fan of the revision, as I believed Mr. Wingreen's performance was superior and I would very much like to see that restored in a future revision. Perhaps when Lucasfilm release the Boba Fett A Star Wars Story in a few years there will be a nice tribute to Mr. Wingreen, perhaps a bounty hunter named Winn Green? Get on that Lucasfilm! Retweet the tweet below:
Mr. Wingreen is perhaps most famous for playing Harry the bartender in All In The Family, for a total of 117 episodes. Mr. Wingreen passed away on Christmas Day at home in Los Angeles and is survived by his son Ned, two grandchildren and his sister Harriet. Rest in peace Mr. Wingreen, you will be missed.
Thank you for reading,