Star Wars Legend Mark Hamill Pays Tribute To Darth Vader Actor David Prowse

Darth Vader

After a short battle with prostate cancer, Star Wars actor and the man under Darth Vader’s armor, David Prowse, passed away today at the age of 85.

We know the legendary James Earl Jones as the unmistakable voice of Vader, but we owe the villain’s menacing physical presence to Prowse, the iconic British bodybuilder who donned the character’s armor and helmet in the Original Trilogy. He also starred in I Am Your Father, a 2015 documentary that depicts the life of the weightlifter as a rather anonymous star of the galaxy far, far away.

Star Wars‘ Mark Hamill, who portrayed Vader’s son Luke and as such played many scenes next to Prowse, has now paid tribute to the actor in a heartfelt tweet, writing:

The competitive weightlifter had a number of minor roles in his 50-year-spanning career, but most notably, he appeared in Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange and rose to prominence in the UK as the first Green Cross Code man, a program to raise pedestrian road safety awareness.

Thanks to the aforementioned documentary film and many previous interviews, we know that George Lucas and Prowse had a difficult relationship, going all the way back to 1977 with the first movie, where the creator allegedly didn’t tell the actor that he was going to be dubbed over. And much like everyone else, he had to learn about Vader being Luke’s father during The Empire Strikes Back premiere. Then, there were the issues with Return of the Jedi‘s royalties, which the bodybuilder allegedly didn’t receive.

In any event, with the passing of yet another individual related to the making of that galaxy far, far away, it’s a sad day for Star Wars fans indeed. Rest in peace David Charles Prowse.