While many in the mainstream entertainment press have been mourning the loss of Leslie Nielsen — who starred in Superhero Movie in one of his last mainstream roles — a geek icon has also passed this morning.
Irvin Kershner, director of The Empire Strikes Back, died this morning after a long illness at the age of 87, according to Empire. He had been struggling with “a long illness,” which was not further elaborated upon.
In addition to Empire Strikes Back, Kershner also directed the James Bond film Never Say Never Again and Robocop 2.
Kershner’s contributions to the pop culture landscape are not always recognized, so give the man a moment of silence while you watch this bit of Star Wars history in the making: