Ian McKellen (born May 25, 1939 in Burnley, Lancashire, England), a classically trained theater actor, played writer D. H. Lawrence in Priest of Love (1982), the king in Richard III (1995) directed by Richard Loncraine from the play by William Shakespeare, film director James Whales in Gods and Monsters (1998) by Bill Condon, Sir Leigh Teabing in The Da Vinci Code (2006) by Ron Howard, Sherlock Holmes in Mr. Holmes (2015) by Bill Condon, the Earl of Southampton in All Is True (2018) by Kenneth Branagh, a con artist in The Good Liar (2019) with Helen Mirren, Gus in Cats (2019) directed by Tom Hooper from the 1981 stage musical by Andrew Lloyd Weber.
He played Magneto in X-Men (2000), X2: X-Men United (2003), both directed by Bryan Singer, X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) by Brett Radner, X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014) by Bryan Singer. He was the wizard Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings movies: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002), The Return of the King, and in The Hobbit trilogy: An Unexpected Journey (2012), The Desolation of Smaug (2013), The Battle of the Five Armies (2014), all 6 films directed by Peter Jackson from J.R.R. Tolkien.
On television McKellen acted in And the Band Played On (1993) by Roger Spottiswoode, Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny (1995), Vicious (2013-2016).