Belfast Telegraph

McKellen: It's just the beginning

Sir Ian McKellen hopes that The Hobbit and Lord Of The Rings films will appeal to generations to come.

The star, 75, plays wizard Gandalf throughout the "classic" series, now coming to a close with the final Hobbit movie.

"I was impressed at the premiere by the age of the kids who slept out to wish us well," the actor said.

"Some of them weren't born in the last century when we started, so our work is part of their lives. And you know, what are we doing it for, other than to have an effect? And the effect could be that crucial to them.

"So it's not the end, it's the beginning now, as people see the film and then want to see the six of them [together]. That will be a whole different experience."

He said he felt lucky to have experienced making the films.

"People ask, 'What is it like to be in Middle Earth?', and it's an understandable question, because I felt it at the premiere; 'Oh I would love to be there...'. Oh - hang about, I was there!" he said.

"But actually, I wasn't, it was the characters who were there, and Middle Earth is actually in our hearts.

"But it's up there on the screen, and aren't we lucky? More than anybody else, more than the director who is watching through a screen, we were actually there. It is snow falling on our boots, it's grass under our feet and the wind blowing in our faces. "

:: The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies is in cinemas now.

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