Ian McKellen On Patrick Stewart: We’re Peers, Not Rivals

Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Patrick Stewart are pretty much best friends at this stage in the game. According to the Lord of the Rings star, the two are never at odds in their careers.

While promoting their new films Waiting for Godot and No Man’s Land, the actors took a moment to discuss their careers and friendship. According to McKellen, he never competes with Stewart for the same roles.

“We are the same actor, really. We’ve had the same career. So we’re peers. We’re equals. We’re not rivals,” the X-Men: Days of Future Past star recently explained to CBS’ Leslie Stahl.

“I don’t normally take to Yorkshiremen,” he remarked.

During their conversation, Patrick Stewart said he first met Ian McKellen during his stint at the Royal Shakespeare Company in the 1970s. Although the actors are close friends now, Stewart admitted that he once felt intimidated by his friend.

“In my glimpses of him in the green room at Stratford, a certain aloofness or austerity about him, which I know — you see this charming, smiling man now — will seem unbelievable to you. But he was younger,” Stewart explained.

Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart are such close friends that the Hobbit star served as minister during the Star Trek: The Next Generation alum’s wedding.

“It was my wife’s idea,” the actor admitted.

When he isn’t hanging out with his BFF, McKellen is still landing one major Hollywood role after another. The actor recently signed on to play an older and retired version of Sherlock Holmes in director Bill Condon’s upcoming flick A Slight Trick Of The Mind.

The film finds the detective struggling to finish an unsolved mystery from his younger days. Without his faithful sidekick Watson, Holmes sets out to complete what he started years ago. The film is reportedly based on the novel of the same name by author Mitch Cullin.

Are you a fan of Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart? Are you surprised by how close the two talented actors have become over the years?

[Image via 20th Century Fox]