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What We've Learned About David Prowse AKA Darth Vader

Last week, our post on David Prowse, the man behind the Darth Vader mask, went viral. We got over 80,000 visitors to the post and its been linked and tweeted all over the Internet. The story itself picked up steam and now, even without our post, the whole blogosphere knows what was once a sidenote.

There has been a lot of speculation as to why LucasFilms asked companies not to invite David Prowse to appear at their events. These have ranged from Prowse calling Lucas a racist for using an African-American voice and appealing to a "black audience." Some have said it's because he gave George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars, problems on and off the set by leaking details and getting mad at having his voice replaced. Some have said Prowse is a jerk or egotistical, while others say he's a wonderful man. I've never met Mr. Prowse or Mr. Lucas, so I can't say one way or the other.

I've tried reaching out to some of the people that might know something about the situation. As far as I can tell, LucasFilm Ltd only allows you to contact them by the snail mail post office. I've emailed C2 Ventures, the company that told him he's been uninvited, and got back a pleasant email saying they'd see if they could give me any contact information. I got no response, so presumably the answer is no.

I've emailed the charitable Stormtrooper costuming group "501st Legion", of which David Prowse is an honorary chairman, and they kindly let me know that they take no sides on the issue and are focused on their non-profit efforts. I can respect that. Knowing its a long-shot, I emailed David Prowse asking for an interview and got no response. He may not even check his email.

So, what have we learned a week after all this has gotten exposure? First, people love Star Wars. No matter what side or position you take on this, the fact remains that the topic stirs a lot of emotion. Second, David Prowse is a beloved , but lesser-known, actor from the film. His face wasn't on screen, which leads some to dismiss his contribution, but most recognize him as a great actor and humanitarian. Third, we'll probably never fully understand what's happened. None of the people who know the inside story have come forward to speak.

This kind of thing may be happening in the industry all the time and most probably figured no one would notice. LucasFilms is a powerful corporation and a lot of people depend on it for a lot of things. Maybe, in the end, the trials of one 75-year-old actor is meaningless in the grand scheme of things. That doesn't mean we don't care.

Mr. Lucas tear down that wall. Please work out whatever it is that's happened between you and Mr. Prowse and give us back whatever little time we have left to meet a film legend. Yes, he's still makingappearances around the world, but the big ones are owned by LucasFilms Ltd and you know that.

If you're interested in signing our petition to bring Prowse back go here.

1 comment:

Thanks for commenting!.