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Burt Ward had all the makings of a true boy wonder: At the age of two, Burt was the youngest professional ice skater in the world. As a teenager, he became the world’s fastest reader – testing before the American Medical Society and clocked at 30,000 words per minute with 90% comprehension (the average reader reads 240 words per minute with 40% comprehension). Little did he know that learning martial arts in addition to his mental and athletic prowess would change his life forever.
Batman Executive Producer William Dozier told Burt that he was chosen out of more than 1,100 other young actors trying out for the role of Robin because the producers believed that "If there really was a real 'Robin, The Boy Wonder,' then Burt would be it." Batman was an overnight sensation! Later in life, Burt attained his black belt from his instructor, All Korean champion, Young Ik Suh.
A bit of fun trivia: When accepting Harvard’s “Man of the Year” award, Burt brought one of his original Robin costumes, even then valued at six figures. Some students came up to him dressed as security guards and told him they would keep the costume safe. Then, in the middle of Burt’s speech, one student stood up and asked, "When is a costume not a costume? When it's stolen." The lights dimmed and the students grabbed the costume and made off. After snapping photos with one another in the cape, they later called Ward and gave the costume back. The ringleader of the gang? Harvard Lampoon editor, Conan O'Brien. Here's another: Bruce Lee's first filmed fight scene was fighting Burt Ward!
In 1994, Burt and his wife, Tracy Posner Ward rescued a great dane and created a rescue for giant dog breeds. Located 50 miles east of Los Angeles, Gentle Giants Rescue and Adoptions is a non-profit charity created by Burt and Tracy. Gentle Giants has rescued and adopted more than 15,500 dogs during their 23 years of operation and now creates a brand of healthy food for the canines.