Tags: ian mckellen | dumbledore

Ian McKellen Dumbledore Could've Happened; Actor Explains Why It Didn't

Image: Ian McKellen Dumbledore Could've Happened; Actor Explains Why It Didn't
Michael Gambon replaced Richard Harris as Dumbledore after Ian McKellen apparently turned down the opportunity. (Warner Bros.)

By    |   Tuesday, 04 Apr 2017 07:01 PM

Ian McKellen revealed in an interview that he was offered the role of Hogwarts Headmaster Albus Dumbledore in the "Harry Potter" films after original actor Richard Harris died in 2002, and tells why he turned down the popular role.

The revelation came about during an appearance on BBC News’ "HARDtalk" show, when host Stephen Sackur brought up a quote by Harris about McKellen and a few other British actors — Derek Jacobi and Kenneth Branagh — calling them “technically brilliant but passionless.”

“Yeah,” McKellen responded. “Nonsense.”

He then said the "Harry Potter" team had approached him to gauge his interest in an unnamed role, which turned out to be Harris’ replacement as Dumbledore.

“I worked out what they were thinking,” McKellen told Sackur, “and I couldn’t ... I couldn’t take over the part from an actor who I’d known didn’t approve of me.”

“I’m the real wizard,” McKellen said, referring to his role as Gandalf in the “Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit” movies.

“You mean you could’ve been Dumbledore?” Sackur asked him.

“Well, sometimes, when I see the posters of Mike Gambon, the actor who gloriously plays Dumbledore, I think sometimes it is me,” McKellen responded, laughing.

McKellen, 77, also played in multiple “X-Men” movies as Magneto, and recently voiced Cogsworth the pendulum clock in the live-action version of “Beauty and the Beast,” which will probably break $1 billion worldwide in coming weeks, the New York Daily News reported.

There has been some speculation that Dumbledore’s role will be reprised in the “Fantastic Beasts” prequels planned for the "Harry Potter" franchise, the Daily News reported.

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Ian McKellen revealed in an interview that he was offered the role of Hogwarts Headmaster Albus Dumbledore in the "Harry Potter" films after original actor Richard Harris died in 2002, and tells why he turned down the popular role.
ian mckellen, dumbledore
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2017-01-04
Tuesday, 04 Apr 2017 07:01 PM
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