08 – Sir Christopher Lee


Happy Birthday, Christopher Lee! The legendary actor would have been 94 this Friday.

Here’s some more stuff you might want to know about him, and some other stuff we mentioned:

  • Between 1986 and 1998, Lee recorded several musical and operatic pieces. In 2005, he started working with metal bands, as it was a genre he was always a fan of. He released two albums on Charlemagne, By the Sword and the Cross and The Omens of Death, which was released on his 91st birthday.
    • His work earned him the “Spirit of Metal” award at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards in 2010.

  • Ra-Ra-Rasputin: I completely messed up the order which Grigori Rasputin was killed; apparently he was given a large amount of alcohol, poisoned with cyanide-laced food and shot in the chest before Rasputin tried to crawl away. He was then shot in the spine, dragged back inside, hit in the face with a shoe, then shot in the head before being dragged to the river.
    • You can watch a recreation with the also great Alan Rickman above, as I couldn’t find Lee’s 1966 version. Or you can listen to the Boney M song for a funkier take.
    • Lee met Maria Rasputin, Grigori’s daughter, in 1976. It was actually her who said that Lee and her father had similar eyes.
  • Webb Miller, the American journalist and war correspondent, covered many events over the span of his career. In addition to Gandhi’s Salt March in India and the last public execution in France, he also wrote pieces on the U.S. Army’s military operation against Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa and The Spanish Civil War.
    • His piece on the Salt March (which you can read here) helped turn the public opinion of British Rule over India.
    • Miller’s 1922 article on the execution of French serial killer Bluebeard is still considered essential reading for aspiring journalists.

  • Hisssss: 1966’s Dracula: Prince of Darkness was Lee’s second appearance in the titular role. Lee starred in seven of the nine Hammer Dracula films.

That’s it for this week. It’s another pitch-off next week, and I’ve already put a clue somewhere in this article. Go and find it.


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