Freeborn designed not only the backwards speaking Jedi master but walking carpet Chewbacca, too, and worked on hundreds of movies during the course of his six decades-long career, including Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey.

It is Star Wars though that he is most fondly remembered for.

“He brought with him not only decades of experience but boundless creative energy,” Star Wars creator George Lucas said in a statement.

“His artistry and craftsmanship will live on forever in the characters he created.

“His Star Wars creatures may be reinterpreted in new forms but new generations but at their heart they continue to be what Stuart created for the original films.”

The news comes as rumours that the character of Yoda could well be the first solo star of his own Star Wars spin-off film, since Disney’s recent purchase of Lucasfilm.

Photo: Getty.