RIP Christopher Lee
1922 - 2015 (Age 93)
Christopher Lee, the actor most famous for his role as Saruman in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, passed away on June 7th at age 93. That is a long life for everyone and pretty amazing when you remember that he was in his eighties playing the wizard from LOTR and making movies even into this year.
It's pretty amazing how many films Lee was in as it was kind of unusual for someone to work so much at his age and also during the beginning of his career as an actor. To our benefit, the man liked to work.
Here's my list of Christopher Lee's top ten movies.
10. Hugo - Monsieur Labisse
Hugo, a visually beautiful film had Christopher Lee as a minor character but his presence amplifies the importance of the character just by it being him.
9. Gremlins 2: The New Batch - Doctor Catheter
I mean, come on, it's fucking Gremlins 2. Just look at the picture and tell me that's not awesome.
8. Police Academy: Mission to Moscow - Commandant Rakov
A Gremlins sequel AND a Police Academy sequel? Was Lee the best actor of the 80's and I just missed it or something? Maybe The Gutt had some competition.
7. Sleepy Hollow - Burgomaster
This is more because I think Sleepy Hollow is a really underrated movie than what Christopher Lee actually does in the movie but whatever, this is my list, so here it is.
6. The Mummy - The Mummy
I was just going to put the picture of him as the mummified Mummy but I thought it made sense to actually show his face from the movie too. It seems like Lee had a propensity for playing monster-type characters and villains throughout his career as he got a chance to play a bunch of the heavy-hitters during his career. More of them to come...boom foreshadowing.
5. Stars Wars: Revenge of the Sith/Attack of the Clones - Count Dooku
I never really liked the name Count Dooku but he was basically The Emperor before The Emperor was the Emperor. Or at least that's what I remember from when I saw Episodes I, II, & III in the theater. True or False, I saw midnight showings of some of the new Episodes with a double-light saber that I bought at the mall? True (and I was in high school...soooooo).
4. The Wicker Man - Lord Summerisle
Not the Bees! Not the Bees! Not the Bees!
3. The Man With The Golden Gun - Scaramanga
Anyone who knows Bond movies, knows the Man with the Golden Gun. Just a classic Bond villain.
2. Dracula Movies: Count Dracula/Dracula Has Risen From The Grave/Prince of Darkness/Taste The Blood of Dracula/Scars of Dracula/Dracula A.D. 1972/The Satanic Rites of Dracula/Dracula and Son/And More - Dracula
Speaking of iconic movie characters, Lee played Dracula in tons of movies, becoming probably the 2nd most famous portrayal of the Count in the history of cinema, and probably the reason why he was asked to play so many arch villains in movies throughout the rest of his career.
1. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring/The Two Towers/The Return of the King - Saruman
Saruman was more in my wheelhouse as far as timing and relevance in my life. I saw a lot of Lee's earlier movies later in my life but The Lord of the Rings was during my college years and thus caught me during the exact right time. I was all about these movies when they came out and Lee was the perfect ying to Gandalf's yang.
Rest In Peace Mr. Lee.