Prowse gave Darth Vader his formidable presence in the original “Star Wars” trilogy.
David Prowse, the English bodybuilder and actor who will forever be remembered as the physical presence of Darth Vader in the original war of stars Trilogy, died at the age of 85. Prowse’s film and television career spanned six decades. In the course of his quietly illustrious career, Prowse didn’t just work on it George Lucas‘ original Star Wars trilogy, but he also appeared in Stanley Kubrick‘s A clockwork orange and the original series of popular science fiction television series Doctor Who.
According to a report from CNN, Prowse’s agent, early on Sunday morning Thomas Bowington announced that the Star Wars actor died after a brief battle with an unknown illness. CNN notes in its report that Prowse was treated for prostate cancer in 2018, but it is unclear whether this is related to his death two years later. News of Prowse’s death was announced via Bowington Management on Twitter: “It is with great regret and heartbreaking sadness for us and millions of fans around the world to announce that our customer Dave Prowse MBE has passed away at the age of 85 is. ”
Image via Warner Bros.
Prowse was best known in his youth for his work as an athlete and bodybuilder who competed for Britain in the Commonwealth Games in the 1960s. He later opened three gyms in London and even helped out with a workout Christopher Reeve for his role as Superman. Prowse clocked at a whopping 6-foot-7, so it’s no surprise that in his work as an actor he tackled roles where a character needed to make a physical impact. Before he could play Darth Vader for the first time in 1977, Prowse played Frankenstein’s Monster three (yes, three) times: 1967 Casino royalein the 1970s The horror of Frankensteinand in the 1974s Frankenstein and the monster from hell. Between his Frankenstein run, Prowse Julian played the bodyguard in A Clockwork Orange.
After 20 years of minor roles on television, Prowse’s life changed forever when he was offered the role of Darth Vader and Chewbacca Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope;; the rest is history afterwards. In a 2008 interview with NPR, Prowse was asked why he wanted to play Darth Vader when he offered the two roles. Prowse replied, “Well, when you think back to all the movies you’ve ever seen where there are goodies and bad guys … you always remember the bad guy.”
Words truer have never been spoken.
The best hidden gems and underrated movies on Netflix
Indies, horror films, and even big studio films that didn’t catch on make up our curated list.
About the author
(1246 articles published)
Allie Gemmill is the weekend content editor at Collider. You can find previous bylines at Bustle, Teen Vogue, Inverse, ScreenRant, SheKnows, VICE and Atom Tickets. When they’re not talking about movies they love at Collider, the usual number of times Allie is seen “Uncut Gems” is because of the need to keep her brand.
More from Allie Gemmill