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Christopher Lee on the power of the fantasy genre


Christopher Lee died earlier this week, but the renowned actor leaves behind an impressive body of work, including a ton of great genre films.

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Christopher Lee, 1922-2015

christopherlee Lord Summerisle, Dracula, Saruman—all immortal. Alas, the legendary actor behind them, who created villains of imposing intelligence and dignity for generation after generation, is dead at 93.

The Guardian.

The veteran actor, best known for a variety of films from Dracula to The Wicker Man through to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, passed away on Sunday morning at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London, according to sources.

The decision to release the news days after was based on his wife’s desire to inform family members first. The couple had been married for over 50 years.

As well as his career in film, Lee also released a series of heavy metal albums, including Charlemagne: The Omens of Death. He was knighted in 2009 for services to drama and charity and was awarded the Bafta fellowship in 2011.

I believe Hobbit part 3 was his final screen performance; if so, his last cinematic words were quite splendid:

Christopher Lee reads "The Nightmare Before Christmas," the poem that inspired the movie

(Video link) In case you're still wistful for some spooky Halloween-type stuff, but are secretly excited for the winter holidays, here is the great Christopher Lee, narrating the poem "The Nightmare Before Christmas" by Tim Burton. Burton wrote his poem in 1982 while working as an animator for Disney (the same year he made his short, Vincent), then later turned into one of the best stop-motion movies ever. 'Tis the season, whichever season you prefer! (via Neatorama)

Hunting of the Snark student film, narrated by Christopher Lee

Michael sez, "The Hunting of the Snark is a student short film narrated by Sir Christopher Lee and based on the Lewis Carroll poem of the same name. The film features a bizarre crew on a dangerous adventure to find a mysterious creature called a Snark. The movie was shot using partial sets against greenscreen and features over 150 vfx shots including cg creatures and oceans! The vfx are all being done by a small team at a DIY vfx studio that I built from the ground up! Pledge $5 to the film's Kickstarter campaign and get a DRM-free digital download of the film and a making of documentary!"

The visual effects for the film are already well underway, but in order to get them finished we need your help to bring on a small team of professional visual effects artists. These artists will help to simulate vast computer generated oceans and make our creatures look as real as possible. In addition to helping with the visual effects, funding you provide will also be used to complete the sound and color correction for the movie.

The Hunting of the Snark - Narrated by Sir Christopher Lee (Thanks, Michael!)

Christopher Lee's Charlemagne reviewed

Mike Barthel reviews Christopher Lee's concept album, which is available at Amazon. It is exactly as you would expect it to be. It is metal. [The Awl]