Sir Ian McKellen has received a coronavirus vaccine.
The 81-year-old acting icon is part of the first eligible group to receive the vaccination against Covid-19 that was recently rolled out to over 80s in the UK, and on Wednesday (16.12.20), he headed to the Arts Research Centre at Queen Mary University Hospital to get his jab.
In a statement, Ian said: “It’s a very special day, I feel euphoric. Anyone who has lived as long as I have is alive because they have had previous vaccinations, the take up amongst the older generation will be 100 percent – it ought to be – because you’re having it not just for yourself but for people who you are close to – you’re doing your bit for society.
“Of course, it’s painless … it’s convenient, and getting in touch and meeting NHS staff and saying thank you to them for how hard they’ve been working is a bonus, I would have no hesitation in recommending it to anyone. I feel very lucky to have had the vaccine.”
Ian joins a growing list of stars – including Prue Leith and Michael Whitehall – who have been called upon by the NHS to receive the vaccine at their local GP practice or vaccination centre.
The ‘Lord of the Rings’ star has been staying indoors for most of 2020 as his age puts him at greater risk of coronavirus complications, and recently said he had been enjoying a “lazy” lockdown.
He said: “I think I’m a rather lazy person so I find it quite easy to sleep in, read the paper, cook a meal, have a snooze, go for a walk, read a book, make a phone call, think about going to bed.”
Ian also said he had refused some film roles as he didn’t want to “die” whilst making a movie.
He added: “I’ve been offered a few films but I wouldn’t feel safe to be making them to be honest. At 81, one is in the vulnerable age group and you just have to say, ‘Am I prepared to die to make this film?'”