Ian McKellen Speaks about Turning Down the Role of Dumbledore in Harry Potter

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Not only did Sir Ian Mckellen play Gandalf in the Lord of The Rings franchise, but he also had the opportunity to play Album Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies. The famous actor revealed that he was contacted about the part after Richard Harris, the actor who played Dumbledore in the first two Harry Potter films, passed away.

Although they didn’t actually tell Ian who they wanted him to play in the movies, he notes that he had a good idea. “When they called me up and said would I be interested in being in the Harry Potter films, they didn’t say what part. I worked out what they were thinking and I couldn’t. I couldn’t take over the part from an actor who I had known didn’t approve of me,” said Ian in a recent interview with BBC’s Hardtalk.

Richard has previously criticized McKellen, and even called him a passionless performer. He was once quoted saying that “I’ve seen these so-called ‘nice’ actors. Very able fellows like Ian McKellen and Kenneth Branagh. But they’re like bank managers. So sweet and careful. Who needs them?”

Instead of Ian, it was Michael Gambon who stepped up to play Dumbledore in the remaining six Harry Potter movies.