Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Bafta honour for Hammer Horror star

Sir Christopher Lee will receive the Academy Fellowship at the Baftas

Dracula star Sir Christopher Lee will receive the Academy Fellowship at this month's Baftas after being hailed as a "bastion of British film-making around the globe".

The Hammer Horror star will join a list of silver screen greats such as Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, Elizabeth Taylor and last year's recipient Vanessa Redgrave, who have previously received the honour.

The title - the highest accolade presented to an individual by the Academy in recognition of an outstanding and exceptional contribution to film - is awarded once a year.

Sir Christopher, 88, said: "It's a very unexpected but very great honour to find myself in such distinguished company to receive the Fellowship."

Tim Corrie, chairman of the Academy, said: "I am absolutely delighted that the Academy is recognising Sir Christopher Lee.

"He has entertained me over many years and is a bastion of British film-making around the globe."

Sir Christopher, who has appeared in nearly 200 films, became a star in the mid-1950s with spine-chilling roles such as Frankenstein's creature and Count Dracula.

Other credits include Billy Wilder's The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, cult classic The Wicker Man, playing Scaramanga in Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun and as the founder of Pakistan in the 1998 movie Jinnah.

The actor, who was knighted in 2009, went on to attract another generation of film fans when he starred as Saruman in the Lord of the Rings trilogy and appeared as Count Dooku in the Star Wars prequels.

The Orange British Academy Film Awards take place on February 13 at London's Royal Opera House, hosted for the fifth year by Jonathan Ross.

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