Darth Vader Actor Dave Prowse Retires From International Fan Conventions

Dave Prowse - I am Your Father Photocall - Getty - P - 2016
Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images
"It is with great sadness" that he made the announcement Monday.

Dave Prowse, the man behind the Darth Vader mask in the original Star Wars trilogy, has announced he will no longer be traveling abroad to attend international conventions.

"It is with great sadness that I announce that, as of today, I will no longer be attending international shows," Prowse said in a statement. "I have had a wonderful time meeting so many incredible fans from countries all over the world. I truly thank each of you for your support and the opportunity to meet so many of you. May the force be with you."

Prowse, 81, has been beloved on the fan circuit for years. The British actor famously recorded the voice for Darth Vader on the set of Star Wars: Episode IV, but later his voice was replaced by James Earl Jones. 

"James Earl Jones did a wonderful job as the voice of Darth Vader, and it was a perfect match for the physical presence I provided the role," Prowse wrote on his website last year, debuting a look of what Star Wars may have sounded like had today's overdub technology existed back when he was working on the 1977 film.  

Darth Vader appeared in Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith with Hayden Christensen wearing the suit. Vader will appear in December's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, with Spencer Wilding stepping into the physical role and Jones once again providing the voice.

Follow Heat Vision on Facebook and Twitter for the latest Star Wars news.