Whether facing off against James Bond, Yoda or Gandalf, Christopher Lee kept making iconic roles. While some celebrity deaths are shocking, it’s a bit easier to appreciate the long and extensive life of the ‘Dracula,’ ‘Lord of the Rings’ star who died at 93.
I know most people’s favorite Star Wars’ prequel villain was Darth Maul, but for me, Lee’s Count Dooku was so much more interesting. Lee gave Dooku an aristocratic, authoritative presence we hadn’t seen from a lightsaber-wielding character in the series. And that cool, gunblade lightsaber remains my favorite.
I’d never been as legitimately concerned a star wouldn’t be alive to complete his role as I was for Lee to return for ‘Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.’ While it ended up not meaning much, the brief cameo was still a lot of fun.
I was even more ecstatic to see Lee reprising his role as Saruman in ‘The Hobbit’ series and even get in on the action in the final installment — ‘The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies.’ I can’t imagine another actor bringing that character to life as masterfully as Lee.
Here’s a few words from some of his LOTR co-stars:
An extraordinary man and life lead, Sir Christopher Lee. You were an icon, and a towering human being with stories for days. We'll miss you.
— Elijah Wood (@elijahwood) June 11, 2015