When you’re loved as a villain, you must be doing something right and Lee played some of the greatest villain roles ever imagined.
Christopher Lee, the English actor best known for his work as Count Dooku in the prequel trilogy, Count Dracula in horror-films and Saruman in the “Lord of the Rings” franchise, died earlier this week. The actor was 93 when he passed.
Lee passed away in a U.K. hospital, where he was being treated for acute respiratory problems and heart-failure. Lee died on June 7, 2015. The information wasn’t reported right away because Lee’s wife, Birgit Kroencke, didn’t want the information going to the press until family and friends could be contacted first.
It was the 1958 hit “Horror of Dracula” that started Lee’s vampire career. Lee would eventually create almost a dozen vampire films as the famous count before moving on to even more iconic roles (yes even larger than Dracula). Lee starred in the 1974 spy-thriller “James Bond: Man With the Golden Gun,” as Scaramanga to further his villainous exploits on screen. Bond villains have their own legacy in cinema, but Younger readers might know Lee best for his most recent, and most successful roles, including the wizard Saruman in the “Lord of the Rings” franchise. A role that had him appear in five of the six films released, though his work in “Return of the King” was not shown in the theatrical release.
From Wizard to Sith, Lee played the role of Count Dooku in the “Star Wars” prequels starting in 2002. Lee reprised the role in 2005’s “Revenge of the Sith” and he also voiced the character in the very popular 2008 animated film “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.”
Lee was Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2001.