David Prowse Dies at 85

Sam Haswell, Staff Writer

On November 28 of this year, David Prowse, the actor who played Darth Vader, passed away. He died from an illness that is yet to be named at the age of 85. Although he didn’t voice Vader, he was featured in the original Star Wars trilogy, “A New Hope,” “The Empire Strikes Back,” and “The Return of The Jedi.” 

Prowse’s death was a surprise to everyone, including students at La Jolla School. Junior Daniel Lee said, “I was very saddened due to the fact that Star Wars was very important in my childhood.” 

Although Prowse is who we see in the Star Wars movies, he did not voice Darth Vader. The voicing for Vader was done by James Earl Jones. Some believe that it was due to his farmer toned voice, while others thought that it was hard to understand him behind his big Darth Vader mask. 

Prowse originally was a heavyweight lifter who won 3 British Heavyweight Lifting Championships from 1962-1964. He got into acting in 1971 in the movie “A Clockwork Orange.” This film is where George Lucas, the Director of Star Wars, first noticed Prowse. Lucas then gave Prowse the option of playing Chewbacca, the gentle giant hero, or Darth Vader, the evil villain. Prowse said, “I said, ‘Well, don’t say any more, George, I’ll have the villain’s part.’” Mr. Prowse recalled, “You always remember the bad guy.” 

Sophomore Nick Zemljic said, “When I was little, I watched the Star Wars series, probably 2 or 3 times, the impact it had was showing me the line between good and evil.” In the case of Star Wars, Darth Vader represented evil perfectly. In fact, USA Today named Darth Vader the most popular movie villain of all time.