l-o-t-r: “Ian is such a nice man. He always said very nice…

l-o-t-r:

“Ian is such a nice man. He always said very nice things about me and I’m happy to return the compliment. Not only is he a very distinguished and eminent actor, with a wonderful record—mainly in the theater—but also to a certain extent in film. He is a major actor and if you find yourself, as I did, playing scenes with him and he’s already had some weeks to get into his part while I’m doing my first day, it can be difficult, to put it mildly. My introduction to the picture was the scene in the garden at Isengard, where I come down the stairs and meet Gandalf. I was up until three in the morning that day, working with Ian McKellen. But Ian was immensely supportive and very encouraging. That doesn’t happen very often these days, where you’re working with a major actor, and they help you and guide you along. But that’s exactly what Ian did with me at the beginning of the film.  I was so glad that most of my scenes were with Ian, especially after I got quite badly injured, when a door slammed on two of my fingers.  My hand was all bandaged and bloody, so I had to hide it and if you look very carefully, you can see that in the film. It was really very difficult, because I was in extreme pain, but Ian was enormously helpful, very encouraging. He’s a tremendous person to work with and you don’t find that very often these days. People are so concerned about what they consider to be rivalry, or confrontation.  They only think about themselves, and they don’t give a damn about the other people who they are working with. But the word is collaboration, not confrontation, and Ian McKellen is a shining example of that.”

Christopher Lee on working w/ Ian McKellen