To pay tribute to Sir Christopher Lee, who unfortunately passed away this Sunday, here are some of his most memorable and iconic roles.
Frankenstein’s Monster in The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)
One of Sir Lee’s first starring roles, this was his first playing across from Peter Cushing (who played Baron von Frankenstein). The two became close friends and colleagues for the next several decades, appearing in several other films together.
Dracula in Dracula (or Horror of Dracula)
Lee’s first appearance as the undead, Transylvanian count was so accurate it lead to his typecasting as the character. Check out this great story about why he continued to accept the Dracula parts:
The process went like this: The telephone would ring and my agent would say, “Jimmy Carreras [President of Hammer Films] has been on the phone, they’ve got another Dracula for you.” And I would say, “Forget it! I don’t want to do another one.” I’d get a call from Jimmy Carreras, in a state of hysteria. “What’s all this about?!” “Jim, I don’t want to do it, and I don’t have to do it.” “No, you have to do it!” And I said, “Why?” He replied, “Because I’ve already sold it to the American distributor with you playing the part. Think of all the people you know so well, that you will put out of work!” Emotional blackmail. That’s the only reason I did them.
Mycroft in The Private Life of Sherlock (1970)
Christopher Lee credits this supporting role as Sherlock Holmes’ brother as the one that firmly moved him out of his Dracula typecast and into more varied roles.
Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man (1973)
Yes, this is the one that got adapted with Nicholas Cage and has earned itself an infamous reputation on the internet. However, before it was the stuff of internet lore, Christopher Lee fought hard for this movie to be made and still attributes it as his best role.
Lee had a long career, and we have more roles on the next page. Click below to see them.