The British actor Sir Christopher Lee, perhaps best known for his role as the conflicted evil wizard Saruman in the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit trilogies, has died at the age of 93.
Lee, with his booming voice, intimidating height, and piercing eyes, portrayed memorable villains for several generations of nerds. He became known for his roles in a series Hammer Horror films, including a famous portrayal of Count Dracula. For a younger crowd, he made his name as Saruman in the adaptations of JRR Tolkien’s epics and as Count Dooku in the Star Wars prequels. He also played a Bond villain in “Man with the Golden Gun” and starred in the 1970s cult horror favorite “The Wicker Man.”
To add to his spooky resume, he released several heavy metal albums, including one called Charlemagne: The Omens of Death, which came out on his 91st birthday, and recorded a metal cover of the Frank Sinatra song ”My Way.”
He died on Sunday, June 7, after being hospitalized for heart failure and respiratory problems, according to The Guardian.