Mostly Credited As: Christopher Lee
Sometimes Credited As: Cristopher Lee
Birth Name: Christopher Frank Carandini Lee
Date Of Birth: May 27, 1922 (Age 93)
Country Of Birth: United Kingdom
Birth Place: Belgravia, London, England
Date Of Death: June 07, 2015
Cause Of Death: respiratory failure
Height: 6' 5" (1.95 m)
To quote George Lucas - "Christopher Lee has defined the macabre for generations of horror film enthusiasts." Movie Credits
Which is in fact, the truth. His long film career began in 1947. In 1957, Lee appeared in his first Hammer Film Production, The Curse of Frankenstein, opposite Peter Cushing (Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars: A New Hope). With the success of Frankenstein, Lee would go on to star in numerous Hammer films throughout the 60s and early 70s, often co-starring with Cushing.
Lee's most legendary role is that of Dracula, which he first portrayed in 1958's The Horror of Dracula. A spectacular hit, this film propelled Lee's career to stardom.
In the 1970s, Lee expanded beyond horror films to such work as The Three Musketeers, The Four Musketeers, and The Man With the Golden Gun. In 1972 he founded Charlemagne Productions Limited. Lee's autobiography, Tall, Dark and Gruesome, was published in 1977 and updated in 1997.
His chiseled, handsome features and deep voice give his characters a captivating intelligence and class - whether as a ruthless villain like Dracula or as a noble hero like Sherlock Holmes.
Lee's lengthy filmography includes: The Face of Fu Manchu, Rasputin: The Mad Monk, Dracula: Prince of Darkness; Theatre of Death, The Three Musketeers, The Four Musketeers, The Man With the Golden Gun; 1941 and most recently The Lord of the Rings trilogy. His 250 film and television credits have earned him a spot in the Guinness Book of Movie Facts and Feats for the international star with the most credits. He has also performed in a multitude of classical theatre productions from Shakespeare to Coward.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005) - Dr. Wonka
Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005) - Count Dooku
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) - Saruman
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) - Saruman the White
Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002) - Count Dooku/Darth Tyranus
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) - Saruman
Sleepy Hollow (1999) - Burgomaster
Jinnah (1998) - Mohammed Ali Jinnah
House of the Long Shadows (1983) - Corrigan/Roderick Grisbane
New Magic (1983) - Mr. Kellar
The Last Unicorn (1982) (voice) - King Haggard
Return from Witch Mountain (1978) - Dr. Victor Gannon
To the Devil a Daughter (1976) - Father Michael Rayner
The Four Musketeers (1974) - Rochefort
The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) - Francisco Scaramanga
The Satanic Rites of Dracula (1974) - Count Dracula
Taste the Blood of Dracula (1970) - Count Dracula
Count Dracula (1970) - Count Dracula
The Oblong Box (1969) - Dr. J. Neuhart
Circus of Fear (1966) - Gregor
Rasputin: The Mad Monk (1966) - Grigori Rasputin
... and many, many more.
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Trivia Both Christopher and his fellow Star Wars Sith Lord, David Prowse, have played "Frankenstein's Monster" opposite Peter Cushing.
Christopher sustained an injury to his hand while filming a swordfight with a slightly drunk Errol Flynn for The Dark Avenger (1955).
Christopher was voted no. 31 on the recent British televised poll "The Greatest Movie Stars Of All Time" above the likes of John Wayne, Michael Caine and Humphrey Bogart.
Christopher appeared in the play The Constant Nymph in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play As You Like It in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play Libel in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play See Naples and Die in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play Othello in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play The Wishing Well in 1948 in Worthing, England, UK.
Christopher appeared in the play The Flat Next Door in 1949 in London, England, UK.
Christopher Lee Quotes
When you're involved in a war it's the old saying 'if your name's written on the bullet, there's nothing you can do about it'. So you just banished it from your mind. Of course I was scared on some occasions and anyone who says they aren't scared during an operation probably isn't telling the truth. I know about six people who had no fear. Literally none. Whether that was due to a lack of imagination or because they'd conquered it, I don't know. In fact one was Iain Duncan Smith's father, who was one of my closest friends. But during a war, people are taught to kill and they have the blessings of the authorities to do so, so if it's your life or somebody else's, you want to be quite sure it's not yours.
I've seen many men die right in front of me - so many in fact that I've become almost hardened to it. Having seen the worst that human beings can do to each other, the results of torture, mutilation and seeing someone blown to pieces by a bomb, you develop a kind of shell. But you had to. You had to. Otherwise we would never have won.
(On doing Military Intelligence in WW2) When people say to me, you know, were you in this? Were you in that? Did you work in this? Did you work in that? I always used to say 'Can you keep a secret?' And they would say 'Yes, yes' and I would say "So can I."
(On his friendship with Peter Cushing) I don't want to sound gloomy, but, at some point of your lives, every one of you will notice that you have in your life one person, one friend whom you love and care for very much. That person is so close to you that you are able to share some things only with him. For example, you can call that friend, and from the very first maniacal laugh or some other joke you will know who is at the other end of that line. We used to do that with him so often. And then when that person is gone, there will be nothing like that in your life ever again.
In my opinion - and I think I know as much, if not more about Bond than anyone, particularly about the characters on whom Ian told me Bond was based, Pierce Brosnan was by far the best and closest to the character.
I stopped appearing as Dracula in 1972 because in my opinion the presentation of the character had deteriorated to such an extent, particularly bringing him into the contemporary day and age, that it really no longer had any meaning.
Lon Chaney and Boris Karloff didn't like the word "horror". They, like I, went for the French description: "the theatre of the fantastique."
In Britain, any degree of success is met with envy and resentment.
Peter Cushing and I have made so many horror films that people think we live in a cave together.
One should try anything he can in his career, except folkdance and incest.