The news of the passing of Christopher Lee today is truly an end of an era. He really was the last of the great icons of horror, following the likes of Lugosi, Karloff, Chaney Jr., Cushing, Price, and Carradine. Lee worked very hard to stay away from being pigeon-holed just as a horror actor, and did an amazing job of it too, appearing in close to 300 films and television appearances in a career that spanned almost seven decades. From playing Scaramanga in the James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun, as Count Dooku in the Star Wars films, or the wizard Saruman in the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, not to mention countless other amazing performances he gave us, he was always a joy to watch. With such a screen presence, he brought his characters to life and always made them memorable.
When he played Dracula for Hammer, he was no longer some foreign aristocrat, but a dominating and powerful presence, one that he gave off in all of his roles. He was the one that made the mummy scary again, when he played the tormented Kharis in Hammer’s 1959 remake. So many roles in so many movies, he gave us horror fans hours upon hours of entertainment. He has now joined the rest of those icons of horror in another place. And like those before him, he will never be forgotten.
Rest in Peace, Sir Christopher.