Ian McKellen

Ian McKellen

Few actors achieve in their lifetime what Sir Ian McKellen has. A repertoire of vast commercial success coupled with critically acclaimed and authoritative Shakespearian roles. A man whose gargantuan personality and varied achievements inspire both admiration and affection. McKellen has been feted and admired in every country across the globe, and has been knighted by, and received the Companionship of Honour from Queen Elizabeth II. He is an icon of, and ardent campaigner in, the cause for LGBT rights.

Many of us know of McKellen through his depiction of Gandalf in Lord of the Rings. Garry O’Connor’s definitive biography reveals the man behind McKellen the actor. The inside story of the person himself: a constantly developing drama and a work in progress. Yet Garry O’Connor pulls no punches: some of his revelations may be controversial to his fans, even explosive, given McKellen’s constant ability to shock and surprise.

The author has himself directed for the Royal Shakespeare Company, and directed McKellen in some of his very first roles. This is an unflinching, yet deeply intimate and affectionate, biography that, like McKellen himself, will stand the test of time as a rounded and complete portrait of one of the most unusual geniuses of our times.
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Genre: Biography & True Stories / Biography: General / Biography: Arts & Entertainment

On Sale: 5th September 2019

Price: £20

ISBN-13: 9781474608510

Reviews

With his varied career and position as LGBT campaigner, icon Sir Ian McKellen's story is one that delights and inspires
WOMAN & HOME
A well-researched, eminently readable book
Benedict Nightingale, THE TIMES
There is serious analysis of McKellen's greatest performances - Iago, Richard III, Gandalf - and some of his less successful ones ... Yet O'Connor also has time for theatre lore and gossip ... It is as much a "voyage of discovery" around British theatre as it is around its subject's psyche, but unless McKellen rethinks his decision and writes his memoirs, this sprawling portrait might be as close as anyone gets.
Victoria Segal, THE SUNDAY TIMES
A revealing and in-depth look at [McKellen's] wide-ranging career and personal relationships
CHOICE magazine
Sir Ian McKellen got cold feet about writing his memoirs, in the end returning a substantial advance to his publisher. In its stead his old friend Garry O'Connor has produced a fascinating account of the actor's life and career - his passions, his craft, his gay rights activism, not to mention his generosity ("Gandalf pays"' is his habitual cry at the end of a meal) ... This is surely the de?nitive McKellen biography.
Alexander Larman, THE OBSERVER
[An] extensive new biography written by Garry O'Connor, whom [McKellen] met 60 years ago when they were students at Cambridge. The book deals with all areas of McKellen's eventful life, professional, personal and political: from his energetic campaigning for gay rights to the time he kissed Tony Blair; his acclaimed Shakespeare roles and his much-loved Gandalf in Lord of the Rings and Widow Twankey in panto; and his close friendships with Judi Dench, Derek Jacobi and Patrick Stewart
RADIO TIMES
[A] fascinating voyage round McKellen
Simon Callow, Guardian
A fascinating biographical study of a stellar acting career - including the secrets that lie behind it
Guardian