Sir Ian McKellen says 'luck' has been key to success

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 4 November 2014
Sir Ian McKellen

Sir Ian McKellen

'The Lord of the Rings' actor Sir Ian McKellen says much of his recent success is down to "luck"

Sir Ian McKellen has attributed much of his recent success to "luck".

The award-winning actor - who was knighted in 1991 for services to the performing arts and was awarded a Freeman of the city of London last month - says a number of his contemporaries would have fared as well in the iconic role of Gandalf in 'The Lord of the Rings', including John Hurt.

Speaking at TimesTalks London, Sir Ian - who was sat beside his 'Vicious' co-star Sir Derek Jacobi - remarked: "We have been so lucky right throughout our careers. It's not just actors our age who perhaps don't work anymore. We've had friends right throughout our careers - of our age - who didn't have work, who should have had work.

"We're no better than a whole lot of people. But genuinely, being quite honest about it all, it's luck. John Hurt could've played Gandalf."

The 75-year-old star has also starred in the 'X-Men' films as Magneto and in a recent interview, he claimed the comic book story is an metaphor for young gay men.

Sir Ian - who came out as gay in 1988 - said: "The people who created 'X-Men' were writing a parable about the way society treated minorities - and the demographic for the comics over the years has been young blacks, young Jews and young gays. They all identify with the mutants - and they're meant to."

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