It was a sad morning waking up to the news of legendary actor Sir Christopher Lee’s passing. At the age of 93, Sir Lee left the movie world with a massive universe of characters he’s portrayed. He’s been in over 200 films! Let’s take a look at some his memorable roles.
Count Dracula in Horror of Dracula (1958) – Christopher Lee steps into the cape and fangs for The Hammer Studios classic. This film is known for being more accurate to the Bram Stoker novel than the previous Bela Lugosi version. Count Dracula leaves his home in Transylvania for London where he comes across his archenemy, Van Helsing. If you’re a horror fan, then this is definitely a must watch and Christopher Lee shines as the title character. He portrayed it so well, he went off to play Dracula 9 more times!!
Francisco Scaramanga in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) – In the Roger Moore era 007, Christopher Lee played the skilled, yet menacing, hit man Francisco Scarmanga. He owns an island where he, and his golden gun, battle against James Bond.
Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man (1973) – Christopher Lee plays the mysterious and charming leader of a society organized around pagan rituals. When a young girl goes missing, a police officer takes his investigation to the island where Lord Summerisle and his people might be linked to the girl’s disappearance. This is a very smart cult thriller. It’s creepy and very unique. Check it out!
Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock Holmes and The Deadly Necklace (1962) and Mycroft Holmes in The Private life of Sherlock Holmes (1970) – That’s right, Christopher Lee has portrayed both of the Holmes brothers in two different ‘Sherlock Holmes’ films. The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, where Lee plays Sherlock’s brother, is the more loved film (96% on Rotten Tomatoes where ‘Deadly necklace’ has a 37%)
Saruman in The Lord of the Rings series (2001-2014) – The White Wizard and Lord of Isengard is one of the main antagonists in the J.R.R Tolkien fantasy series. This role introduced a new generation of movie lovers, including myself, to the great Christopher Lee. His suave gestures, his menacing voice and evil wizard skills made him an unstoppable threat to Gandalf, Frodo and the rest of the fellowship. Christopher Lee continued to play Saruman in The Lord of the Rings video games and The Hobbit films.
Count Dooku in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002) and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (2005) – Say what you will about the prequels, but you cannot deny the fact that Christopher Lee portrayed another great menacing villain in the Star Wars universe. Christopher Lee plays Count Dooku, and evil Sith Lord who defeated both Anakin Skywalker and Obi Wan Kenobi, and gave Yoda a worthy match. I remember seeing him ‘Attack of the Clones’ and was like “Holy shit. That’s Saruman from LOTR!” Just as he did in Lord of the Rings, Christopher Lee caught the attention of young film lovers from around the world.
Thank you for all the amazing cinematic characters you’ve portrayed. Rest in peace.
Sir Christopher Lee 1922-2015
What’s your favorite Christopher Lee role? Let us know! Axial On!
Written by: Phillip Acevedo