Original Darth Vader Actor David Prowse Dead at 85

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David Prowse, the English actor and bodybuilder best known for his role as Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy, has died at age 85.

His death was confirmed by agent Thomas Bowington, who wrote on Twitter, "It's with great regret and heart-wrenching sadness for us and million of fans around the world, to announce that our client DAVE PROWSE M.B.E. has passed away at the age of 85." Prowse played Darth Vader in the first three Star Wars films, although James Earl Jones provided the character's voice.

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Mark Hamill shared his condolences for his co-star on Twitter, calling him "a kind man & much more than Darth Vader." He added, "Actor-Husband-Father-Member of the Order of the British Empire-3 time British Weightlifting Champion & Safety Icon the Green Cross Code Man. He loves his fans as much as they loved him."

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Aside from his appearances in Star Wars, Prowse had also appeared in A Clockwork Orange, Jabberwocky, and Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell, among others. Born in Bristol in 1935, he was a bodybuilder before his character actor work. In the UK, he was known as the first Green Cross Code man, a character featured prominently in road safety videos.

RIP.

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