British actor David Prowse, best known for his role as Darth Vader in Star Wars, died at 86, according to his agency Bowington Management. The actor’s agent Thomas Bowington confirmed that Prowse died after a short illness.

Prowse gained worldwide fame as Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy by George Lucas (1977-1983). The actor wore a hero costume, and his voice was James Earl Jones. Before playing Darth Vader, Prowse rose to prominence in the UK as the first actor to star in the Green Cross Code road safety campaign.

Prowse also worked in weightlifting and helped prepare actor Christopher Reeve for the role of Superman.