Sir Ian Murray McKellen (born 25 May 1939) is an English actor. His career spans six decades, having performed in genres ranging from Shakespearean and modern theatre to popular fantasy and science fiction. Over his career, he has received numerous awards including seven Laurence Olivier Awards, a Tony Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. He has also received nominations for two Academy Awards, five Primetime Emmy Awards, and four BAFTAs. He achieved worldwide fame for his film roles, including the titular King in Richard III (1995), James Whale in Gods and Monsters (1998), Magneto in the X-Men films, and Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies.
The BBC states that his “performances have guaranteed him a place in the canon of English stage and film actors”. A recipient of every major theatrical award in the UK, McKellen is regarded as a British cultural icon. He started his professional career in 1961 at the Belgrade Theatre as a member of their highly regarded repertory company. In 1965, McKellen made his first West End appearance. In 1969, he was invited to join the Prospect Theatre Company to play the lead parts in Shakespeare’s Richard II and Marlowe’s Edward II, and he firmly established himself as one of the country’s foremost classical actors. In the 1970s, McKellen became a stalwart of the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre of Great Britain. In 1981 he received his first Tony Award nomination and win for Best Actor in a Play for his role as Antonio Salieri in Amadeus.
Ian McKellen’s net worth is estimated to be $9.8 Million, according to the list of richest British Hollywood Actors.