Ian McKellen hade det här att säga om när han spelade mot Christopher Lee in Lord of the Rings. Det mäst intresanta är att Christopher Lee var ett stort Lord of the Rings fan och hans drömroll var att spela Gandalf. Nu blev det inte så eftersom Peter Jackson hade honom som sin favorit villain-skådespelare och ville ha honom som just Saruman. Saruman's dödscen var en hyllning till de gammla Dracula-filmerna, något Christopher Lee inte gillade (dels för att han vill att det ska vara så likt böckerna som möjligt och dels, skulle jag tro, för att han alltid har ogillat sina Dracula-filmer). En annan intresant sak är att han var rädd att förlora rollen som Saruman då att vara med i LotR betydde så mycket för honom. Lite svårt att tänka sig igentligen.
Christopher Lee, CBE, CStJ (1922-2015)
When I arrived in New Zealand to start filming as Gandalf, in the first week of the 21st Century, Peter Jackson held a dinner for some of the cast. I was happily next to Christopher Lee who I had known of throughout my actor-admiring life. He'd been cast as the white wizard Saruman but his opening line to me was: "I've always thought I should play Gandalf. I read 'Lord of the Rings' every year - sometimes twice."
He then treated me to a snatch of the black speech of Mordor and I felt inadequate. Not that that was Chris's intention: he was 78 and well practised in the art of gentlemanly rectitude. The epitome of "tall, dark and handsome" kept any inner demons for his acting Dracula, Frankenstein's monster and, once, as Sherlock Holmes.
It's what made his Saruman so effective. With his long beard and white robes, he had the air of a stern yet benign Pope that belied his ambition to rule Middle-earth, with cruelty and spite.
Between our facing-off on the set, he could easily be persuaded to reminisce. After all there were over 200 films on his CV and a couple of singing albums. His earliest intention was to be an opera bass., Touchingly he was a little nervous at the outset. "Peter made me do my first speech 10 times!!" I told him not to worry as the previous day I'd had to repeat a scene 27 times. His dark eyes widened and glinted but he didn't complain again.
Peter was tickled to have his Hammer Horror hero as the villain and devised a spectacular death to acknowledge his vampiric past - falling onto a spike which pierced his dastardly heart. Chris didn't much approve and I think the episode can only be seen in the extended Director's Cut.
An odd pity that he didn't work in the theatre, nor direct a film, like his idol Laurence Olivier who had Chris as a spear-carrier in his film of 'Hamlet.' But he was justly proud of the span and success of his career in movies and when knighted must, like all of us, have been pleased to share a title with Sir Larry.
The last time Saruman and Gandalf filmed together was 'round a table in Rivendell but while Galadriel, Elrond and I were in the Wellington studio, Sir Christopher's interjections were filmed in London some months later. You can't tell. In movies, all is not as it seems.
Yet when he joined the "Star Wars" cast he said he did all his own stunts without benefit of a stand-in. That certainly wasn't true of his gravity-defying fight with Gandalf. I suspect he just wanted to declare he was in old age fit for purpose. He needn't have worried. His acting prowess never declined. -- Ian McKellen, June 2015
Där finns ett videoklipp där ute som var från Christopher Lee's sista vlog. Många har påpekat hur finitlig den är som om han visste att han skulle dö då han tackar sina fans för att ha varit där under alla åren men saken är att den videon var från Julen 2013 så den har ingen koppling till att han nu gick bort och vid Jul så är det inte otänkbart att man känner sig sentimental och vill tacka. Visst så kände han sig allt svagare (jag tror han redan då satt i rullstolen) och visste att han inte skulle leva i många år till så han ville säkert ha det sagt, men det var inte det kusliga sammanträffandet som vissa vill ha det till.
Although my heart may be weak, it's not alone. It's grown with each new experience. And it's found a home with all the friends I've made. I've become a part of their heart, just as they've become a part of mine.
And if they think of me now and then, if they don't forget me, then our hearts will be one. I don't need a weapon. My friends are my power!
-Sora, Kingdom Hearts