Thanks in part to Disney Chairman Bob Iger, plans are in motion for a terminally ill man in England to view the final “Star Wars” film before he dies.
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” the last film in the current Disney trilogy, is set to release Dec. 20.
For a man staying at Rowans Hospice in Waterlooville, Hampshire, the release date is too far away. He told a staff member that his dying wish was to watch “The Rise of Skywalker” alongside his young son before he dies.
Unsure of how to make such a time-sensitive wish come true, Rowans Hospice went on social media to try and get a message to the right people who could possibly screen the film early on behalf of their patient.
“Can you help?” the hospice said in a tweet. “We have a patient who’s a HUGE #StarWars fan. Sadly, time is not on his side for the 20th Dec.”
Can you help? We have a patient who’s a HUGE #StarWars fan. Sadly, time is not on his side for the 20th Dec. His wish is to see the final Star Wars film #RiseOfSkywalker with his young son. If you know ANYBODY who might be able to make it happen, please share with them. Thank you
— Rowans Hospice (@RowansHospice) November 26, 2019
“This is our most desperate hour. Help us @HamillHimself, @jjabrams, you’re our only hope,” it said, addressing actor Mark Hamill, who plays Luke Skywalker in the films, and director J.J. Abrams with a twist on one of the best-known “Star Wars” quotes.
Eventually, the message reached the eyes of the chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Co., who pledged to do what he could to bring the film to the patient.
Two days after Rowans Hospice sent its tweet, Iger responded with exciting news.
“On this Thanksgiving, we at @Disney are grateful to be able to share #TheRiseOfSkywalker with a patient and his family @RowansHospice. May the force be with you and with us all!” Iger wrote on Twitter.
— Robert Iger (@RobertIger) November 28, 2019
According to BBC News, Lisa Davies was the health care support worker who initially told Rowans staff about the patient’s dying wish. Davies said she was “utterly speechless” by the unexpected result.
“We totally appreciate that Disney have had to move mountains to make this happen,” Davies said. “The response from everyone, including the Star Wars community, has been absolutely phenomenal over the last few days.”
“We also want to thank the media for covering the story and totally respecting the privacy of the family,” she said.
Dying Star Wars fan to get early screening https://t.co/APl1uEamwU
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) November 28, 2019
Hamill tweeted his support of the plea, wishing the hospice staff “good luck” in bringing the film to its patient.
Hopefully, the man and his son will make an unforgettable memory together as they are captivated by the final film in the Skywalker saga.
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