Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
Daniel looks at Disney's beautifully melancholy classic ‘The Rescuers’ on the latest episode of Ink & Paint - listen now!x

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SIR IAN McKELLEN

CELEBRATING A TRUE FREE SPIRIT

BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS
LATEST REVIEWS
By Lily Meek
22nd May 2020

"I wish it need not have happened in my time," said Frodo.

"So do I," said Gandalf, "and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us."

A very serious discussion broke out at my dinner table but a few weeks ago, when a BuzzFeed quiz told me I was Gandalf in a "Which LOTR character are you?" quiz. I'd like to reiterate for any family members reading, that it did say I was Gandalf. After holding a vote that I did not agree to or participate in, they said I'd likely be more like Boromir. Strong words were said.

I've resorted to believing that although I may not be him... I really wish I was. He's one of those characters that everyone has a soft spot for, and hopes in some way his attributes reflect theirs. The mentor, the wise, the patient, the supportive, king of pep talks, magical in morals and an overall top-notch wizard. Only one man really could have pulled it off... and although Christopher Lee had hoped it had been him, there isn't a single nerd out there that doesn't smile when they think of Sir Ian McKellen.

McKellen is versed in everything from Shakespeare to Magneto. He's fought dragons, waited for Godot, solved crime (and committed it), he's been a clock, unfortunately, been a cat, fought wars, cast spells, and since 1988 been at the forefront for championing equality. Founding Stonewall UK, McKellen has been a patron and petitioner for gay rights, from speeches at schools to speaking in front of 50,000 people in New York. At a 2002 LGBTQ Pride parade in San Francisco, McKellen stated the best thing he ever did was give himself the freedom to be himself when he came out. I think he is too humble. In doing this, he not only grants himself grace but also bestowed upon the world a kind, quirky and authentic man that people so wanted to follow and listen to.

In all his interviews, McKellen is just fun to watch and to listen to. He is an atmosphere changer, and seems to bring about a positive presence that is tangible to any room he enters. I can only assume this is a by-product of the unconditional kindness and acceptance he must extend. His charisma becomes him. It is very rare to find someone who could just talk and entrap listeners from near and far, but I imagine if McKellen were to sit down and read the dictionary out loud, people would find it marvellously entertaining.

After recently listening to his podcast with David Tennant, it was interesting listening to snippets of this man's tale. He did what he loved - and because he loved it, people noticed. This, of course, doesn't take into account the long hours, hard work and criticism that was endured. And I guess that brings me to my point. The list above (the one with all his roles and marvellous things he's done) isn't about just listing McKellen's parts and films; I wanted to show his diversity. Talking of doing what he loves is definitely in regard to acting, but it's also in regard to roles - to his chasing after the different.

He's the man who calls us all darlings, swishes his red wine and rocks that little pink scarf.

After 'The Lord Of The Rings', McKellen admits to being offered more roles like Gandalf. "Well, I'd already played a wizard, hadn't I." He's always in it for the new and if he's not sure about it, he digs deeper - telling Graham Norton that he only agreed to act in 'X-Men' because of the advocation of minorities portrayed in the film. He has always gone after exactly what he wants, and never sold out (except 'Cats'... let's not talk about that, but even then... the man's 80. If he wants to have a little fun, we should just let him).

That's what it all comes back to, and that's what I meant before when I said he bestowed on us all a gift by coming out. He's the man who calls us all darlings, swishes his red wine and rocks that little pink scarf. Sir Ian McKellen, you are a true free spirit - atrociously funny, bold and just so beautiful. I opened with the quote because, in actual fact, he did make decisions with what to do with the time he had. Amazing decisions. By being exactly who you were meant to be - and in embracing that - you give us permission to follow suit.

Keep doing you, you beautiful queen. And happy birthday!

TOP-RATED REVIEWS
Shudder Horror Bundle - Prepare for shivers down your spine!
TRENDINGWIN SHUDDER HORROR BUNDLEPrepare for shivers down your spine!
Spencer - A beautifully strange and deeply moving fable of the People's Princess
TRENDINGSPENCERA beautifully strange and deeply moving fable of the People's Princess
Pocahontas - 25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
TRENDINGPOCAHONTAS25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
Limbo - A witty yet humanising look at the refugee experience
TRENDINGLIMBOA witty yet humanising look at the refugee experience
Europa! Europa - The scoop on Australia's newest film festival
TRENDINGEUROPA! EUROPAThe scoop on Australia's newest film festival
Cosmic Sin - A film that delivers on the promise of its title
TRENDINGCOSMIC SINA film that delivers on the promise of its title
The Shepherd - A true story through an unflinching lens
TRENDINGTHE SHEPHERDA true story through an unflinching lens
Kuessipan - Coming of age story in an Innu community
TRENDINGKUESSIPANComing of age story in an Innu community
Red Pill, Blue Pill - 10 films influenced by 'The Matrix' on its 20th anniversary
TRENDINGRED PILL, BLUE PILL10 films influenced by 'The Matrix' on its 20th anniversary
Scream - A satisfying and wickedly fun return to Woodsboro
TRENDINGSCREAMA satisfying and wickedly fun return to Woodsboro
House of Gucci - Haus of Gaga and home of bad Italian accents
TRENDINGHOUSE OF GUCCIHaus of Gaga and home of bad Italian accents
The Eyes of Tammy Faye - Grab a Diet Coke - this biopic is truly blessed
TRENDINGTHE EYES OF TAMMY FAYEGrab a Diet Coke - this biopic is truly blessed
The Fox and the Hound - Celebrating 40 years since Disney's saddest tail
TRENDINGTHE FOX AND THE HOUNDCelebrating 40 years since Disney's saddest tail
Long Story Short - The short story is this movie's mediocre
TRENDINGLONG STORY SHORTThe short story is this movie's mediocre
Yuli - Dancing on a knife's edge
TRENDINGYULIDancing on a knife's edge
A Clockwork Orange - 45 years of the old ultra-violence
TRENDINGA CLOCKWORK ORANGE45 years of the old ultra-violence
Encanto - Family matters derail the latest from Disney Animation
TRENDINGENCANTOFamily matters derail the latest from Disney Animation
King Richard - Biopic on Williams sisters is a crowd-pleasing volley
TRENDINGKING RICHARDBiopic on Williams sisters is a crowd-pleasing volley
Tumbbad - Visually rich Hindi horror
TRENDINGTUMBBADVisually rich Hindi horror
River's Edge - The kids aren't alright
TRENDINGRIVER'S EDGEThe kids aren't alright
© 2011 - 2022 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us!