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Wednesday September 30th, 2015

The Man Behind R2-D2

Don Bies to Accept ISHF Induction Award for George Lucas

(Alamogordo, New Mexico) - The New Mexico Museum of Space History is pleased to announce that Don Bies, former curator of the Lucasfilm Archives and R2-D2 operator, will be accepting the International Space Hall of Fame Induction award on behalf of Star Wars Director George Lucas at this Saturday evening’s ceremony.

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Bies is a well-known special effects artist whose career began as a mechanical designer on David Cronenberg’s 1986 Academy Award winning film The Fly. In 1987, he began a long time affiliation with George Lucas as the official operator of R2-D2. The very next year he became the second curator of the Lucasfilm Archives, where he organized several exhibitions highlighting the films of George Lucas. Bies started his own business, White Room Artifacts, in 2010. He specializes in designing and creating high concept traveling exhibitions along with developing models and special effects for television and film.

“It will be a pleasure to have Don here to accept the award on behalf of Mr. Lucas. His long association with Lucasfilms and intimate working knowledge of the magic behind special effects and modeling will make his acceptance speech fascinating for all our guests,” said Museum Executive Director Chris Orwoll.

A limited number of tickets are still available for the Induction Ceremony and Gala Banquet. The event will be held this Saturday, October 3, at the Tays Special Events Center on the campus of NMSU-A. The keynote speaker will be Astronaut Al Worden, Apollo 15 Command Module Pilot. Other special guests include Francis French, co-author of Worden’s biography Falling to Earth, and Justin Humphries, curator of the George Pal Estate, who will be accepting the Induction award on behalf of the Pal family. Copies of Falling to Earth, autographed by Worden and French, will be on sale at the event, along with autographed Saturn 5 model rockets. To purchase tickets, contact the museum at the phone number below. There will be no tickets available at the door.

The New Mexico Museum of Space History is a division of the NM Department of Cultural Affairs. For more information, call 575-437-2840 or toll free 1-877-333-6589 or visit the website at www.nmspacemuseum.org.