Star Wars 'The Rise of Skywalker' Screens Early For Dying Fan

A dying man and his family were granted his final wish: a private screening of the new "Star Wars" movie before its official release date.

The ardent fan wanted nothing more than to see the latest installment of the intergalactic saga, but feared he wouldn't live until Dec. 20, when the film is scheduled to open.

And so the employees of Rowans Hospice in Great Britain took to social media trying to fulfill his heartfelt want. 

"Can you help? We have a patient who's a HUGE #Star Wars fan. Sadly, time is not on his side ... 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," read the facility's tweet.

The sharing was spectacular. Shoutouts for help went to former Disney CEO Michael Eisner,  current CEO Robert Iger,  and Luke Skywalker actor Mark Hamill.

All of them answered. And Iger made the man's dream a reality.

In a scenario worthy of the top-secret handling of Oscar votes, a Disney representative showed up last week at Rowans Hospice, about 70 miles south of London, holding a black case. Inside was a hard drive containing the highly anticipated film. 

The center threw a costume party to commemorate the top secret viewing, drawing a wannabe Chewbacca, an Obi-Wan Kenobi and several stormtroopers. Every person signed non-disclosure agreements before seeing the movie on an iPad. When it was over, the rep placed the drive back in his case and left. 

The ailing patient, who asked that his illness and identity not be disclosed, was ecstatic. "During what is such a horrible situation to be in, you have helped make some wonderful memories and bring some joy to my family," the man said in a statement to Disney. "I am a huge Star Wars fan and what I am going through is completely — and top it all, I thought I was not going to see the film I have been waiting to see since 1977 (when the original film was released)."

"I still can't believe it," he said. "The only way I can describe it is that I feel like I have a million pounds."

Hospice chief executive Ruth White also thanked Disney and Iger. She also noted the screening was bittersweet.

"There is such joy today, but everyone's eyes are glistening with the sadness of it," she said. "It's amazing and sad in equal measure."


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