'May the force be with you': 'Star Wars' actor voiced Ukrainian app for alerting air raids

Actor Mark Hamill voiced Ukrainian air-raid app Air Alert to warn citizens of impending Russian attacks with iconic Star Wars quotes. TheVerge.

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"Attention. Air alert. Head for the nearest cover," Hamill says via Air Alert, an app linked to Ukraine's air defense system. When the threat has passed, Hamill continues: “The alarm is over. May the force be with you."

Referring to their favorite character Luke Skywalker, some of the lines contain recognizable quotes from the Star Wars franchise, such as "Don't be careless. Your self-confidence is your weakness."

Hamill's Hollywood-inspired work is available on iOS, Android, and Huawei as an additional English setting in the Air Alert app, in addition to alerts in Ukrainian. The actor recorded lines that notify users of rocket attacks, shelling, street fighting, radiation and chemical threats.

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Voiceover was first announced last year alongside a partnership between Air Alert and United24, a global initiative to raise charitable donations in support of Ukraine. Hamill is an ambassador for United24, which was created by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in May 2022.

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Previously, Hamill raised funds for the purchase of drones by Ukrainians, playing signed Star Wars merch.

Hamill has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine throughout its conflict with Russia. He previously raffled off Star Wars autographed posters to raise funds for the Ukrainian forces to buy reconnaissance drones. “Here I am sitting in the comfort of my own home when Ukraine has power outages and food shortages and people are really suffering,” he said. “It motivates me to do my best.”

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Hamill also sees similarities between the Ukrainian struggle and the Rebel Alliance's struggle against the totalitarian Galactic Empire in the Star Wars franchise. “The tale of good and evil resonates with what is happening in Ukraine,” Hamill said in an interview with The Associated Press. – The Ukrainian people rallied and gave such a heroic answer. You can't help but be inspired by how he weathered that storm."

Some Ukrainians have found solace - or perhaps the Force - in Hamill's Star Wars-inspired voice acting. “A very cool phrase for this situation,” said Elena Eremina, a business manager in Kyiv. “I wouldn’t say that I feel like a Ukrainian Jedi, but sometimes this phrase reminds me to straighten my shoulders and keep working.”

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