Dying Portsmouth man to see new Star Wars movie early after appeal from Mark Hamill

Dying Portsmouth man to see new Star Wars movie early after appeal from Mark Hamill

A terminally ill Portsmouth man will watch an advance screening of the new Star Wars movie, following an intervention from Mark Hamill.

The Rowans Hospice near Portsmouth, Hampshire, reached out to Hamill on Twitter, after one of their patients said that his dying wish was to be able to watch The Rise of Skywalker with his young son.

The Rise of Skywalker, which wraps up the current Star Wars trilogy, is due for release on 19 December, but The Rowans Hospice said that the date is too far off for the patient in question.

After the request went viral on Twitter, Hamill replied: “Contact @Disney. They are the only ones who can make this happen. Good luck!”

Yesterday (28 November), Disney chief executive Bob Iger confirmed that they had been in touch with the hospice and that the film will be screened for the pair.

“On this Thanksgiving, we @Disney are grateful to be able to share #TheRiseOfSkywalker with a patient and his family @RowansHospice,” he tweeted. “May the force be with you and with us all!”

In a statement, Rowans Hospice Health Care Support Worker Lisa Davies said that she was left “speechless” after Disney agreed to screen the new film.

“We cannot thank Disney enough for confirming that they will be able to share the film to fulfil our patient's wish,” she said. “We totally appreciate that they have had to move mountains to make this happen!”

She added: “The response from everyone, including the Star Wars community, has been absolutely phenomenal over the last few days. So a massive thank you to every single person that has shared our post and given their time to help make this possible.”

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, starring Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Adam Driver, sees JJ Abrams return to the director’s chair four years after he revived the franchise with 2015’s The Force Awakens.