“Star Wars” star Mark Hamill jokingly warned the Radio City Rockettes to “remain vigilant” while performing at Donald Trump’s inauguration on January 20.
“Good Luck to #TheRockettes at the Inauguration,” the actor wrote on Twitter on Friday. “Have fun, but remain vigilant Ladies! There’s just so much to grab there. #TheyLetCelebsDoIt”
Hamill is referencing a scandal that erupted during the presidential campaign when audio of Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women surfaced weeks before the election. “I just start kissing them,” Trump was caught saying to then-“Access Hollywood” host Billy Bush. “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything…. Grab them by the p—y.”
News that the Rockettes would be performing at the inauguration turned out to be a contentious issue when various dancers with the troupe began speaking out on social media, saying they were “appalled” that they were being compelled to perform at the event.
“Finding out that it has been decided for us that Rockettes will be performing at the Presidential inauguration makes me feel embarrassed and disappointed. The women I work with are intelligent and are full of love and the decision of performing for a man that stands for everything we’re against is appalling,” wrote Rockette Phoebe Pearl on her private Instagram account on Thursday.
However, on Friday the Madison Square Garden Company, which manages the dance group, issued a statement saying that participation is voluntary.
“The Radio City Rockettes are proud to participate in the 58th Presidential Inaugural,” the company said. “For a Rockette to be considered for an event, they must voluntarily sign up and are never told they have to perform at a particular event, including the inaugural. It is always their choice. In fact, for the coming inauguration, we had more Rockettes request to participate than we have slots available. We eagerly await the inaugural celebrations.”
The planning of Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20 has come under heavy scrutiny in recent weeks.
As TheWrap previously reported, Trump’s team has had a difficult time lining up performers for the events next month. The only other confirmed performers are the 16-year-old former “America’s Got Talent” contestant Jackie Evancho and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
Performers who are known to have rejected requests include Celine Dion, Elton John, country singer Garth Brooks and opera star Andrea Bocelli.