It is with great sadness that I find that Dave Prowse, the body and actor beneath the Darth Vader suit has passed away, aged 85. He was a giant of the acting galaxy but probably never got as much recognition as he should have earlier in Star Wars history (as he was kept in secrecy behind the mask to preserve his mystique). Dave was however seen in film and on screen if you knew how to recognise him, he appeared in several Hammer Horror movies with Peter Cushing (usually playing Frankenstein’s monster or the Mummy) and for kids of the UK back in the 1980’s will remember him as the face of a government road safety campaign. He was the Green Cross Code Man, a superhero that taught kids how to safely cross roads as well as the Dark Lord that tried to rule the galaxy far far away!
David was a proud Bristol born gentleman who had a career in bodybuilding which led to him getting the roles in the Hammer movies due to his physique. He also appeared in A Clockwork Orange with Malcolm McDowell . Dave was then cast as the Dark Lord of the Sith Darth Vader, though we didn’t hear him as his dialogue was famously dubbed over by James Earl Jones due to his West Country accent.
I obviously haven’t had chance to build or design a hilt in his honour but I did model Darth Vader’s hilt a while ago so I will repost the pictures here…
My thoughts and prayers go out to Mr Prowse’s family, friends and the Star Wars community at large. You were the ultimate on screen villain but a gentle green giant off it.
May the Force keep and protect you forever more My Lord….
My saber is bleeding and for one day I am a Sith
Images via Daily Mail Newsgroup, Bristol Post.