‘Star Wars’ actor Mark Hamill drops by White House for a visit with ‘Joe-bi-Wan Kenobi’

May 3, 2024, 9:00 PM

Actor Mark Hamill takes off sunglasses given to him by President Joe Biden, as he joins White House...

Actor Mark Hamill takes off sunglasses given to him by President Joe Biden, as he joins White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre as she speaks with reporters in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House, Friday, May 3, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

WASHINGTON (AP) — “Star Wars” actor Mark Hamill dropped by the White House on Friday for a visit with President Joe Biden and walked away with a pair of the president’s aviator sunglasses and a greater respect for the office.

“I love the merch,” he said, taking off the glasses during a quick appearance at the White House daily press briefing following his visit with Biden. Mark Hamill, 72, famous for playing Luke Skywalker, kidded with reporters that he’d take a few questions — as long as they weren’t about “Star Wars.”

“I was honored to be asked to come to the White House to meet the president,” he said. He’s been to the White House before, during the Carter and Obama administrations, but he’d never checked out the Oval Office, and that was quite something, he said. Biden showed off photographs and other Oval Office items, Hamill said.

Hamill said Biden told him to call him “Joe,” to which Hamill offered an alternative suggestion: “Can I call you Joe-bi-Wan Kenobi?”

“He liked that,” said Hamill, who also voiced the Joker in “Batman: The Animated Series.”

Both Hamill and the White House were vague about his reason for visiting. But Hamill, a Democrat and Biden supporter with a huge social media following, has been posting about the president’s reelection campaign this week.

May 4th is unofficially “Star Wars” Day, in part because of the famous Jedi phrase “May the force be with you.” The pun goes, “May the fourth be with you.”

Hamill also lent his voice to “Air Alert” — a downloadable app linked to Ukraine’s air defense system. His voice urges people to take cover whenever Russia unleashes another aerial bombardment on Ukraine.

READ MORE: The first-timer’s guide to the Kentucky Derby

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‘Star Wars’ actor Mark Hamill drops by White House for a visit with ‘Joe-bi-Wan Kenobi’