|First:||Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1977)|
R2-D2 (or, Artoo Detoo) is an astromech droid and one of the central characters featured in the Star Wars franchise. R2-D2 has proven to be one of the most popular and well-known robot characters of all time. Played by Kenny Baker, Artoo first appeared in the 1977 film Star Wars. Baker reprised the role for the film's two sequels, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. More than fifteen years after the release of Return of the Jedi, Baker was back under the dome for the three-film prequel trilogy beginning with 1999's Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. As before, Baker reprised the role for the film's two sequels, Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith.
The Phantom Menace
Attack of the Clones
The Clone Wars
Revenge of the Sith
The droids eventually came under the possession of the Intergalactic Droid Agency, who leased their services out to paying clients across the galaxy. One of their first clients was a crystal miner from the planet Dodz named Lott Kemp. When the droids arrived however, they learned that Lott had left the planet and so they briefly aligned themselves with a young boy named Jost Ellon. They assisted Jost in refurbishing an antique defense droid known as the Ranger X-One who helped them to liberate the planet from the corrupt alien governor Kugg. The Ranger X-One fought against Kugg's droid enforcer, the Destroyer. Artoo gave the Ranger X-One a decisive advantage by attaching a power coupling between both droids and siphoning energy from the Destroyer into the Ranger. 
A New Hope
Artoo and Threepio came under the care of the Organa family where they became pivotal instruments in Bail Organa's Alliance to Restore the Republic. The Alliance embarked on a clandestine mission to steal technical schematics relating to the Empire's newest super-weapon, the space station known as the Death Star. The mission was a success and Bail's daughter Princess Leia Organa and the droids were en route to her home world of Alderaan to deliver the plans to her father. Their consular ship, the Tantive IV was overtaken by the Imperial Star Destroyer Devastator and Leia knew that she had to act fast in order to hide the stolen data. She uploaded the Death Star blueprints into the memory circuits of Artoo-Detoo along with a message intended for Clone Wars veteran Obi-Wan Kenobi to bring Artoo back to Alderaan. Artoo and Threepio escaped from the Tantive IV aboard a life pod that jettisoned them to the nearby planet of Tatooine.
Threepio was unaware of Artoo's new mission parameters, and Artoo refused to reveal any of the details. When they arrived on Tatooine, they landed in the arid Jundland Wastes. The two bickered with one another and ultimately took off in different directions. They were soon reunited however as both droids had been captured by the scavenger race known as Jawas. The Jawas fitted them both with restraining bolts and kept them in a storage basin at the bottom of their massive Sandcrawlers. As the droids endured the cramped quarters during their journey across the desert, Artoo met an older model astromech droid designated R5-D4. R5 never cared for the more popular R2 units, but it came to respect Artoo-Detoo after hearing Artoo’s tales of the Empire and the Rebel Alliance.
The Jawas journeyed to the Great Chott Salt Flat where they prepared the droids for resale. A moisture farmer named Owen Lars elected to purchase C-3PO and R5-D4. R5 knew that Artoo needed to stay with Threepio in order to fulfill his mission for the Alliance, so he deliberately blew his motivator circuit, prompting Lars to return the droid in exchange for Artoo-Detoo. 
Back at the Lars homestead, Owen's young nephew Luke Skywalker cleaned the droids up and removed Artoo's restraining bolt. He unwittingly activated the holoprojector, which showed a recording of Princess Leia, beckoning the aid of Obi-Wan Kenobi. When Luke and Threepio questioned Artoo about the message, the little astromech dismissed it as "old data". That evening, Artoo ran off in search of Obi-Wan Kenobi. Luke and Threepio didn't even know he was gone until the following morning.
They tracked the droid out towards the Jundland Wastes, but were waylaid by a tribe of Tusken Raiders. The Raiders likely would have killed Luke had it not been for the arrival of Obi-Wan Kenobi who scared them off by mimicking the howl of a Krayt Dragon. Obi-Wan brought everyone back to his hut where Artoo relayed Leia's full message to him. The message spoke of the stolen Death Star plans and asked Obi-Wan to bring the droid safely back to Bail Organa on Alderaan.
By this point, the Empire had learned that the droids possessed the stolen data and had escaped the Tantive IV and sought refuge on Tatooine. Darth Vader sent Zeta Squadron to Tatooine to retrieve them. While searching for Artoo and Threepio, the Stormtroopers massacred the Jawa tribe who had found them and murdered Luke's aunt and uncle.
Obi-Wan and Luke brought the droids to a cantina in the space port of Mos Eisley where they found a pilot named Han Solo and his Wookiee co-pilot Chewbacca who were willing to fly them to Alderaan. During the journey however, they found to their horror that Alderaan had been destroyed by the Death Star. Han's ship, the Millennium Falcon flew too close to the Death Star and was caught inside the station's tractor beam. Artoo and the others were able to sneak off the ship undetected and found temporary sanctuary in one of the station's computer maintenance rooms. Artoo-Detoo plugged himself into the station's mainframe and was successfully able to interpret the entire Imperial network. He found the location of the tractor beam generator controls and gave the information to Obi-Wan Kenobi. Luke, Han and Chewie went off to rescue Princess Leia, who had since been captured and brought aboard the station. Artoo and Threepio remained behind, doing their best not to draw any attention to themselves. When Luke and the others found themselves trapped inside a garbage compactor, Artoo saved the day by accessing the station's systems and shutting down all of the compactor units on the detention level. They were soon reunited, but Obi-Wan tragically lost his life in a lightsaber duel with Darth Vader, shortly after deactivating the tractor beam controls. Amidst a cloud of blaster fire, Artoo and the others boarded the Falcon and escaped from the Death Star.
He was brought safely to the Rebel's secret base on the moon of Yavin IV. The Rebels downloaded the Death Star plans from his system and analyzed them for any possible weaknesses. Once a battle strategy was agreed upon, Artoo was assigned to support Luke Skywalker's X-Wing fighter. He was loaded into the back of the fighter and performed traditional astromech functions in the Rebels' fight against the forces of the Empire. During the trench run dogfight against the Death Star, Luke's X-Wing took a severe hit from a TIE Advanced x1 Starfighter piloted by Darth Vader. Artoo took considerable damage from the hit and was nearly destroyed. Despite this, Luke managed to fire a proton torpedo into the station's exhaust port, ultimately destroying the Death Star. When he returned to Yavin IV, Artoo was repaired and made to look good as new. 
"Showdown on the Smuggler's Moon"
R2-D2 accompanied Luke Skywalker to the moon of Nar Shaddaa in Hutt Space. He was present when Luke entered a busy cantina where he was subsequently accosted by several patrons eager to deprive him of his lightsaber. 
The Empire Strikes Back
Return of the Jedi
The New Republic
Notes & Trivia Edit
- Favorite character of Star Wars creator George Lucas. [can we get a frakkin' citation here?!]
- R2-D2 has also appeared on three episodes of the children's television series Seseme Street.
- In the "Blue Harvest" Star Wars tribute from season six of Family Guy, R2-D2 was patterned after the character of Cleveland Brown and voiced by Family Guy regular Mike Henry.
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (Earliest chronological appearance)
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
- Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1st appearance)
- Star Wars Holiday Special
- Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
- Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi
- Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens
- Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi
- Star Wars: Droids 1
- Star Wars 1 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 2 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 3 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 4 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 5 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 6 ("A New Hope" adaptation)
- Star Wars 7
- Star Wars 12
- Star Wars 14
- Star Wars 16
- Star Wars 25
- Star Wars 27
- Star Wars 32
- Star Wars 40
- Star Wars 54
- Star Wars 70
- Star Wars 71
- Star Wars 73
- Star Wars 74
- Star Wars 75
- Star Wars 77
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 1
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 2
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 3
- Star Wars: Return of the Jedi 4
- Star Wars: Dark Empire 1
- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (novelization)
- Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (novelization)
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (novelization)
- Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker (Official Star Wars film adaptation)
- Star Wars: Dark Force Rising
- Star Wars: Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina
- Star Wars: I, Jedi
Young Adult books
- Family Guy: It's a Trap! (As Cleveland Brown)
See also Edit
The World of Star Wars
Star Wars miscellaneous
Internal Links Edit
External Links Edit