TV Insider

Ian McKellen Says He's 'Not Too Old' to Reprise Gandalf in 'Lord of the Rings' Series

Ian McKellen walks a red carpet for 'Ian McKellen: Playing The Part' during the 12th Rome Film Fest at Auditorium Parco Della Musica on November 1, 2017 in Rome, Italy.

Ian McKellen is open to reprising Gandalf in the forthcoming Lord of the Rings television series.

The 78-year-old actor, who played the character in Peter Jackson's film trilogy and The Hobbit movies, said in an interview with BBC Radio 2 that he's "not too old" to portray the wizard in Amazon's adaptation.

Host Graham Norton asked McKellen if it was "annoying" there will "be another Gandalf," leading the star to question, "What do you mean 'another Gandalf?'"

"I haven't said yes because I haven't been asked," he said. "Gandalf is 7,000 years old so I'm not too old to play it."

Amazon confirmed plans in November for a multi-season adaptation of The Lord of the Rings novels, which were written by late author J.R.R. Tolkien. The series will explore new storylines set before The Fellowship of the Rings.

"The Lord of the Rings is a cultural phenomenon that has captured the imagination of generations of fans through literature and the big screen," Amazon Studios scripted series head Sharon Tal Yguado said. "We are honored to be working with the Tolkien Estate and Trust, HarperCollins and New Line on this exciting collaboration for television."

Amazon has yet to announce casting for the series. Sean Astin, who played Samwise Gamgee in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, told EW Radio in November that the show was an "intriguing" idea.

McKellen presently voices the demon in a West End production of The Exorcist, and is slated to star in the movie Hamlet Revenant with Connie Nielsen.

By Annie Martin

Originally published in UPI Entertainment News.