Fact Check

Was the 'Star Wars' Imperial March Played for President Trump During UK Visit?

The Band of the Grenadier Guards played several songs during the president's visit to Buckingham Palace in spring 2019.

Published Jun 3, 2019

The Band of the Grenadier Guards played the "Imperial March" from "Star Wars" during U.S. President Donald Trump's visit to Buckingham Palace.

On 3 June 2019, U.S. President Donald Trump traveled to London for a three-day state visit in the U.K. As he and his family met with Queen Elizabeth, toured Buckingham Palace, and attended a state banquet, a video supposedly showing the Band of the Grenadier Guards' "trolling" Trump by playing the "Imperial March" — villain Darth Vader's theme song from the Star Wars franchise — hit social media:

The visuals in this video are real representations of the event, but the audio isn't.

Trump and First Lady Melania Trump stood on the steps of Buckingham Palace as the Queen's band played the U.S. national anthem. Afterwards, the band launched into a medley of U.S. military anthems as Trump and Prince Charles inspected the Grenadier Guards. The viral video used footage from this moment but replaced "Anchors Aweigh" (the march song of the U.S. Navy) with the "Imperial March." The original audio can be heard in the following video, starting at the 3:13 mark:

Oddly enough, this isn't the first time the "Imperial March" has been digitally inserted into a clip of Trump during a trip to the United Kingdom. After Trump visited Blenheim Palace in July 2018, the following footage was passed around social media:

Again, the visuals in that video were real, but the audio was not. Here's a clip featuring the original audio from Trump's 2018 trip:


CBS News.   "Queen Elizabeth and Trump Deliver Speeches at State Banquet."     3 June 2019.

Phelps, Jordyn.   "Trump Gets the Royal Treatment with State Visit to the United Kingdom."     ABC News.   3 June 2019.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.