World-famous bodybuilder David Prowse known for playing Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy has died at 85. Thomas Bowington, manager of Prowse confirmed the death news and revealed that the bodybuilder took his last breath after a short illness.

End of an Era

"May the force be with him, always. Though famous for playing many monsters - for myself, and all who knew Dave and worked with him, he was a hero in our lives," said Bowington.

The makers of Star Wars cast Prowse for the role of Darth Vader due to his mindblowing physique, but the role was voiced by James Earl Jones. It was Prowse who initially recorded the voice for Darth Vader, but he was replaced by Jones because he had a West Country accent.

David Prowse
David Prowse Wikimedia Commons

Prowse's career as an actor spanned for more than 50 years. With his hulking 6ft 6in, the actor dominated the frames in the Star Wars trilogy. He was also a master in weightlifting and had represented England in the Commonwealth Games in the early 1960s.

It was during this period that Prowse developed a friendship with his rival bodybuilders Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno.

The Legacy of Playing Green Cross Code Man

Despite enjoying global popularity for playing Darth Vader, David Prowse had several times claimed that playing the Green Cross Code Man, which he first portrayed in 1975 was the best job he has ever done.

The Green Cross Code was actually a character used in British road safety advertising aimed at children. Prowse's portrayal as the Green Cross Code received positive responses from all corners, and the bodybuilder also enjoyed the moments he spent with children for this campaign.

A documentary named 'I am Your Father', based on Prowse's life was released in 2015. The film narrated the life of Prowse many years after he played the role of Darth Vader.