Johnny Depp Remembers Christopher Lee: "As Noble and Gallant as He Was Wise"

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Chritopher Lee

The two actors appeared together in five films directed by Tim Burton.

Johnny Depp, who shared the screen with Christopher Lee in five films directed by Tim Burton, remembers the late actor as “hypnotic and commanding, as noble and gallant as he was wise.”

Lee, who died June 7 in London at age 93, made his mark as Dracula in a series of Hammer Films beginning with 1958’s Dracula and going on to such signature roles as the evil wizard Saruman in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies and the light-saber-wielding Count Dooku in Star Wars II: The Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Episode III: The Revenge of the Sith.

Depp and Lee first appeared together when Lee played the Burgomaster in Burton’s 1999 film Sleepy Hollow. Lee voiced characters in Burton’s Corpse Bride and Alice in Wonderland and played Willy Wonka’s dad in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and a New England fishing captain in Dark Shadows.

Depp says Lee was “a brilliant mind with a beautiful heart whose strength of spirit will, in turn, live on in the hearts and minds of many, many generations to come.”

Read Depp’s full remembrance below:

Sir Christopher Lee, a wonderful man. A profoundly kind, generous, warm and fascinating man. The consummate gentleman. He was an inspiration in both life and art. In the time we spent together, I had the honor and good fortune of being welcomed into his illustrious proximity. His friendship is one that I will always hold close and dear to my heart.

He was the last of his kind. A rare specimen. Hypnotic and commanding, as noble and gallant as he was wise. A brilliant mind with a beautiful heart whose strength of spirit will, in turn, live on in the hearts and minds of many, many generations to come.

My eternal respect, love, admiration and thanks to my cherished friend, his family and his dearly beloved Gitte, the woman he worshipped. 

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