Darth Vader Actor David Prowse Dies at 85, Mark Hamill and Other ‘Star Wars’ Actors React

by Jeremy Spirogis
English actor David Prowse poses with a fan dressed up in a Darth Vader costume during a Star Wars convention on April 27, 2013

The Star Wars franchise has misplaced a legend. David Prowse, who performed Darth Vader within the authentic Star Wars trilogy, has died on the age of 85. Prowse reportedly died after a brief sickness, in keeping with his agent, Thomas Bowington.

“May the force be with him, always!” Bowington stated in an announcement to BBC. “Though famous for playing many monsters – for myself, and all who knew Dave and worked with him, he was a hero in our lives.”

English actor David Prowse poses with a fan dressed up in a Darth Vader costume during a Star Wars convention on April 27, 2013 | Thierry Zoccolan/AFP via Getty Images
English actor David Prowse poses with a fan dressed up in a Darth Vader costume throughout a Star Wars conference on April 27, 2013 | Thierry Zoccolan/AFP through Getty Images

Who was David Prowse?

Prowse was a bodybuilder-turned-actor who performed the physique of Darth Vader in 1977’s A New Hope, 1980’s The Empire Strikes Back, and 1983’s Return of the Jedi. Darth Vader was voiced by James Earl Jones, Bob Anderson was the Vader stunt double, and Sebastian Shaw performed the face of Anakin Skywalker on the finish of Return of the Jedi.

Prowse was additionally well-known within the U.Ok. for enjoying the highway security advocate Green Cross Code Man, for which he earned the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE)—an honor bestowed upon British civilians for his or her contributions to the humanities and sciences.

[embedded content material]

RELATED: 6 of The Best Darth Vader Moments in ‘Star Wars’

David Prowse and George Lucas famously didn’t get alongside

George Lucas and Prowse had a tense relationship through the filming of the unique Star Wars trilogy. In 2010, the actor stated he stopped getting invites to official Star Wars occasions as a result of he’d “burnt too many bridges” through the years with Lucasfilm.

The tense relationship between the actor and Lucas reportedly began as a result of Prowse allegedly wasn’t informed his voice could be dubbed over by Jones. He discovered after A New Hope premiered. He additionally reportedly felt slighted when Shaw was forged because the face of Anakin Skywalker.

Prowse additionally reportedly guessed the “I am your father,” plot twist earlier than The Empire Strikes Back even started filming. And in keeping with Den of Geek, he was “somewhat intoxicated” at a Star Wars fan occasion when he stated to the gang, “Father can’t kill son, son can’t kill father. So they live again to star in Star Wars IV.”

Lucas discovered about Prowse spilling the Darth Vader beans, leading to Prowse being labeled a “security threat” to the most important plot twist, which was stored secret from everybody on set apart from Mark Hamill, who was informed the night time earlier than filming. When it was time to movie the notorious Empire Strikes Back scene, Prowse was informed to say that Obi-Wan Kenobi was Luke’s father.

RELATED: This Is How ‘Star Wars’ Writers Pulled Off ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ Twist

Mark Hamill says David Prowse was ‘much more than Darth Vader’

As for Hamill, the Luke Skywalker actor had nothing however form phrases to say concerning the late star.

“So sad to hear David Prowse has passed,” he tweeted on Nov. 29. “He was a kind man & much more than Darth Vader. Actor-Husband-Father-Member of the Order of the British Empire-3 time British Weightlifting Champion & Safety Icon the Green Cross Code Man. He loved his fans as much as they loved him. #RIP.”

C3PO actor Anthony Daniels additionally tweeted about Prowse’s loss of life, saying the actor gave Vader a “mighty presence.”

“More sad news. Dave has gone,” he wrote. “I don’t think 3PO ever faced Vader’s mighty presence on set, other than as a bag of bits on Chewie’s shoulders in the carbon freezer. But Dave’s iconic figure dominated the finished film in ’77 and has done so ever since. And will continue to do so.”

The official Twitter account of authentic Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew, who died in 2019, additionally reacted to the information of Prowse’s loss of life. The tweet featured an previous image of Prowse, Mayhew, and R2D2 actor Kenny Baker, who died in 2016.

“RIP Dave Prowse,” the tweet learn. “I hope you’re up there sharing a pint and a story with the boys.”

Daniel Logan, who performed younger Boba Fett in Attack of the Clones and The Clone Wars, additionally tweeted in honor of Prowse.

“Sad to hear of the passing of a #StarWars family member,” he said. “RIP Dave Prowse. Darth Vader wouldn’t be the same without you in the costume. We had many fun times & laughs at cons together over the years. Glad to have been able to call you a friend. Rest now and be one with the Force!”

Leave a Comment