David Prowse, Actor Who Played Darth Vader In ‘Star Wars,’ Dies At 85 From COVID-19
On November 28, actor and bodybuilder David Prowse, who created the character of Darth Vader in the Star Wars movies, died at the age of 85 at a hospital in London, England. The official cause of death for the actor was later revealed to be COVID-19, making Prowse one of the many celebrities to pass away as a result of the disease. He is survived by his wife Norma Scammell and his three children.
Prowse is best known for playing the iconic villain Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy from 1977 to 1983. While James Earl Jones performed the voice for the character, Prowse portrayed Darth Vader physically, doing most of the action scenes and stunt work, along with interacting with the other actors like Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher. Prowse originally got the part after having a small role in the film A Clockwork Orange. George Lucas decided to ask the giant actor to audition for either the character of Chewbacca or Darth Vader. Prowse decided to go with the latter, stating that he chose to play the villainous father of Luke Skywalker because “you always remember the bad guys.”
Prowse appeared in other films such as the comedy Jabberwocky and fantasy adventure movie The People That Time Forgot. Prowse acted in very few movies after Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, due to arthritis which he suffered from for most of his life before it eventually became an all-consuming issue for him.
Several celebrities paid tribute to the late actor on Twitter, particularly those who were fans of Star Wars. Hamill stated in a tweet, “So sad to hear David Prowse has passed. 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.”
Prowse will live on through his reputation for playing one of the most famous antagonists of all time.
So sad to hear David Prowse has passed. 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 pic.twitter.com/VbDrGu6iBz
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) November 29, 2020