How it Felt Playing Darth Vader? The Actor Shares His Experience!

MOVIE NEWS – While story-wise in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Darth Vader was kind of a missed opportunity, it’s true, that we haven’t seen the true-to-form Dark Lord of the Sith on screen since Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, well, besides this short scene at the end of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. (“Nooooooooooooooo!”) Now the actor who played him on screen in the latest live-action Star Wars movie talked a bit about taking on the iconic character and how Darth Vader was brought to life this time around.

The British actor Spencer Wilding put on the suit Darth Vader in for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and it was still James Earl Jones once again who was the voice the infamous Sith Lord. He recently spoke about his experience with ITV during a special screening of the movie in his hometown of Rhyl, Wales.

“It’s awesome. Every person here would love to play Darth Vader. It’s just an awesome character. I’ve got so much love for this town, and all the surrounding towns. This character has got so much presence – it’s unbelievable. I’m just one small element of Star Wars. It’s a massive production, and it takes a lot to bring the magic of that film. It’s just awesome.”

Spencer Wilding clearly felt how much it as a big opportunity of a lifetime to bring Darth Vader to life once again on the big screen which may very well be the last time ever. Besides knowing that it was – literally – breathtaking, he also took his preparations very seriously and he did his best to make sure that the Darth Vader scenes were pretty authentic – even if they felt a little pointless story wise.    “We studied the movements of Darth Vader. We had a trainer who got it bang on. We wanted to keep it ‘Darth Vader!’ It’s every actor’s dream. I’m still pinching myself!” told the actor about his preparations for the role and how the creative team made sure it was as true to the character as could be.

In the original Star Wars trilogy, David Prowse played actually Darth Vader on screen, while most people connect the role with James Earl Jones, since he provided the voice. Unfortunately, David Prowse at the age of 81 couldn’t put on the suit again for Star Wars: Rogue One, so, it was Spencer Wilding who did the main scenes.

“Main scenes”? Yes, an actor by the name of Daniel Naprous is also credited as Darth Vader for the movie. There’s some information which leaked, that Daniel Naprous was in the costume for the significant reshoots that were done, still, Spencer Wilding was in the major scenes, comprising the huge scene at the end which was easily one of the high points of the entire movie and franchise as well. It could easily be argued that was one of the best Darth Vader scenes in the history of the Star Wars franchise, so playing him on screen for it is going to go down as a pretty big honor when all is said and done.

Preceding the release of Rogue One, it was a long time since the fans of Star Wars had seen a truly threatening Darth Vader on screen, so it was certainly a treat to see it done in this first standalone Star Wars movie from Disney and Lucasfilm. There has been a little bit of backlash over the decision to resurrect Grand Moff Tarkin and young Princess Leia using CGI, so luckily director Gareth Edwards was able to do Darth Vader justice and avoid any controversy over that aspect of the movie, since he is one of the most if not the single most beloved movie villain of all time. Spencer Wilding has worked fairly steadily as an actor in shows like Game of Thrones but now, if nothing else, he will probably always have a home at Star Wars fan conventions.

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BadSector is a seasoned journalist for more than twenty years. He communicates in English, Hungarian and French. He worked for several gaming magazines - including the Hungarian GameStar, where he worked 8 years as editor. (For our office address, email and phone number check out our impressum)

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