Ian McKellen Wants To Return As Gandalf In Amazon’s ‘The Lord Of The Rings’ TV Series

Sir Ian McKellen is not ready to part with the iconic character and would like to keep playing Gandalf in Amazon’s upcoming LOTR TV series.

Actor Ian McKellen poses on the red carpet at the Rome Film Fest, held in November in Italy.
Andrew Medichini / AP Images

Sir Ian McKellen is not ready to part with the iconic character and would like to keep playing Gandalf in Amazon’s upcoming LOTR TV series.

A month after Amazon announced The Lord of the Rings TV series is officially happening, people are already wondering who will be cast to play the lovable characters that populate the Middle Earth universe.

Long-time Tolkien fans were delighted to find out that Amazon bought the television rights to The Lord of the Rings and is planning to do a multi-season prequel to the wildly popular trilogy.

Whether the new story line will be set between The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings or it will precede both, chances are we’re bound to come across at least a few of the emblematic characters we’ve grown to love.

One character in particular comes to mind: Gandalf, the wisest and most powerful of the Istari — as the “glue” that binds together The Lord of the Rings story with its prequel, The Hobbit.

Since Amazon is basing its new The Lord of the Rings prequel on the collective novels of J.R.R. Tolkien, we might just see Gandalf again, this time on the small screen.

The odds of that happening are pretty good, considering the character also makes an appearance in The Silmarillion as the Maia Olorin, together with other prominent faces in the Lord of the Rings adventure, such as Lord Elrond, Galadriel, and Celeborn.

And, since you can’t think about Gandalf without picturing the charismatic Sir Ian McKellen, British television personality Graham Norton brought up the subject during his BBC Radio 2 talk show on Saturday (December 16), on which the Lord of the Rings star appeared as a guest.

Although any talk of a possible cast is premature, since Digital Spy reports the project is still in its early stages and the producers have not yet begun to think about casting, Norton has clearly pondered what it would be like to see someone other than McKellen play the role of Gandalf.

Assuming the actor would not be reprising his role as the beloved wizard, Norton asked McKellen what he thought of the new Amazon prequel to The Lord of the Rings and if he found it “annoying” that there could be “another Gandalf in town.”

“What do you mean, another Gandalf?” McKellen replied, prompting Norton to inquire if the actor is involved in the upcoming series.

Even though McKellen said he hasn’t yet been approached by Amazon regarding the highly anticipated The Lord of the Rings TV series, the actor hinted he is eager to portray the affable wizard once more.

“I haven’t said yes because I haven’t been asked,” McKellen clarified. “But are you suggesting that someone else is going to play it?”

The actor further remarked on the age of the character, saying it wouldn’t be too outlandish for Gandalf to make a comeback in the new Tolkien-inspired series.

“Gandalf is over 7,000 years old, so I’m not too old [yet],” added the 78-year-old actor.