Wilbur was a rare exception to the rule of stunt performer ignorance, but it wasn’t thanks to any of the explosive flicks listed above. For that, he could thank two things: stunt performer stints on a string of “Halloween” sequels, and the ever-passionate clutch horror fans who surrounded each of them with love.
Though it’s been reclaimed as a cult classic since the time of its release, fans were shocked when Michael Myers, burned to a crisp at the end of “Halloween II,” actually didn’t return for the threequel, “Season Of The Witch.” For many, 1988’s “Halloween IV: The Return of Michael Myers” also constituted a return to form for the franchise, and the new man behind the shape was the driving force behind the bump in quality. Wilbur portrayed Michael in “Halloween IV,” “V,” and “VI,” with help from Tom Morga in “The Return” and A. Michael Lerner in “The Curse of Michael Myers.” In a 2017 interview on the “Horrible Horror” podcast, he attributed the power of his Michael era to what he called “the Wilbur walk,” a steady, lumbering gait we’ve all come to associate with the iconic villain, but which had always just been Wilbur’s stride. When you consider he doubled for the likes of John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, and Paul Newman throughout his career, the confident, wide-legged strut, not showy but never, ever timid, makes sense.
George P. Wilbur’s incredible career spanned six decades and just about every type of film you can imagine. His contributions to the art of motion pictures earned him a much-deserved spot in the Hollywood Stuntmen’s Hall of Fame. He will live on in the hearts of those he loved most and remains eternal on the silver screen.