Christopher Lee Fast Facts

Horror master, legendary villain Christopher Lee dies
Horror master, legendary villain Christopher Lee dies


    Horror master, legendary villain Christopher Lee dies


Horror master, legendary villain Christopher Lee dies 02:33

Here's an in-depth look at British actor Christopher Lee's life.

Birth date:
May 27, 1922

Birthplace: London, England

Birth name: Christopher Frank Carandini Lee

Father: Geoffrey Lee, a professional soldier

Mother: Contessa Estelle Marie Carandini di Sarzano

Marriage: Birgit "Gitte" Kroencke Lee (March 17, 1961 - present)

    Children: Christina Ericka, November 23, 1963

    Military Service: Royal Air Force and Special Forces, 1941-1946, Flight Lieutenant

    Other Facts:
    Speaks four languages: French, Italian, Spanish, and German.

    Worked with British Intelligence in World War II.

    Only member of the cast of "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy who met author J.R.R. Tolkien.

    Lee is a distant relative by his mother's second marriage, to Ian Fleming, creator of James Bond.

    - Works as an office clerk until joining the RAF during World War II.

    1947 - Joins the Rank Organization acting school, often called "The Charm School," a British program that groomed new acting talent.

    1948 - First movie "Corridor of Mirrors" is released.

    1957 - Begins working with Hammer Film Productions, the start of his horror film career. "The Curse of Frankenstein" is released that same year.

    1958 - "Horror of Dracula" is released, the first time Lee portrays Count Dracula.

    1965 - The first of Dr. Fu Manchu movies, "The Face of Fu Manchu," is released.

    1974 - Appears as James Bond's nemesis in "The Man with the Golden Gun".

    1977 - His autobiography, "Tall, Dark and Gruesome," is published.

    2001 - In recognition of his contributions to film, he receives the Commander of the Order of the British Empire award.

    2002 - Stars in two of the year's top grossing movies, "Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones" and "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers."

    2003 - His autobiography is re-released with a new title, "Lord of Misrule: The Autobiography of Christopher Lee."

    2009 - Is made a Knight of the British Empire.

    February 2011 - Receives the Academy Fellowship, the highest honor, at the Orange British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA).

    2012 - Reprises his role as Saruman from "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy in part one of "The Hobbit" trilogy, "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey."

    May 27, 2013 - Releases his "100 percent heavy metal" album, "Charlemagne: The Omens of Death", a follow-up to the more symphonic "Charlemagne: By the Sword and the Cross from 2010.

    December 2013 - Releases a second heavy metal Christmas album, "A Heavy Metal Christmas Too," a follow-up to his 2012 "A Heavy Metal Christmas."