Sir Christopher Frank Carandini Lee, CBE, CStJ (27 May 1922 – 7 June 2015) was an English actor, author, and singer. With a career spanning nearly seven decades, Lee was well known for portraying villains, gaining recognition for appearing as Count Dracula in seven Hammer Horror films—ultimately playing the role nine times in total. His other film roles include Francisco Scaramanga in the James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), Count Dooku in the Star Wars films Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002) and Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005), and Saruman in both the Lord of the Rings film trilogy (2001–2003) and the Hobbit film trilogy (2012–2014).
Lee was known for his imposing height: he was 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m) tall. On BBC Radio’s Test Match Special “View from the Boundary” interview with Brian Johnston on 20 June 1987, Lee described himself as 6 ft 4 in tall. Lee and his wife Birgit were listed among the fifty best-dressed over 50s by the Guardian in March 2013.
Lee identified as an Anglo-Catholic Christian. Politically, Lee supported the Conservative Party. He described Michael Howard as “the ideal person to lead the party” in 2003, and also supported William Hague and David Cameron.
Lee served in the British Intelligence Corps during the Second World War.