Christopher Lee Gets Heavy

The UK Telegraph has revealed that British actor Christopher Lee — iconic as Dracula in Hammer’s series of horror films, mostly playing against Peter Cushing’s Van Helsing, but also taking significant roles in genre films both large and small ever since — is a featured singer on a heavy metal album about Charlemagne, the First Holy Roman Emperor.

87-year-old Lee described his performance in the heavy metal album as “pretty unexpected”. Written by Italian producer and composer Marco Sabiu, Charlemagne: By the Sword And the Cross would be “symphonic metal”, he said, and added:

“It’s fascinating for me that at this stage in my life, people are beginning to look upon me as a metal singer.”

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Among his many roles, and besides Dracula (above), Sir Christopher Lee (who was knighted by the Prince of Wales in 2009) has played Frankenstein’s monster in Hammer’s The Curse of Frankenstein (1957):

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The Mummy (1959):

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the evil Fu Manchu, beginning with The Face of Fu Manchu (1965):

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Rasputin, The Mad Monk (1966):

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Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man (1973) and the in-production The Wicker Tree (2010):

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the Bond villain, Francisco Scaramanga, in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974):

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the alien Captain Zandor in two episodes of Space 1999 (1976):

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Sherlock Holmes (in 1962 and in the 1990s on TV):

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Saruman in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001, 2002, 2003):

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Count Dooku / Darth Tyranus in Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002):

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and much else besides, including the Jabberwock in Tim Burton’s upcoming Alice in Wonderland!

Read more about the Charlemagne album here. Looking rather weatherbeaten but as imposing as ever, Lee talks about it in the following YouTube video:

  • Source: via Cat Sparks
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