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Ian McKellen Thanks Fans For Their 'Kind Words' After Scary Fall Off London Stage Mid-Performance

Ian McKellen
David M. Benett/Dave Benett/WireImage

The 85-year-old actor was in the middle of a fight scene in 'Player Kings' on Monday night when he lost his footing and fell off the stage.

Concerned fans sent their well wishes to Sir Ian McKellen, the legendary actor best known for playing Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, after he lost his footing and fell off the stage while in the middle of a fight scene in Player Kings at London's Noël Coward Theatre.

The BBC reported that “As the house lights came up, the actor cried out and staff rushed to help.” An audience member described the moment the actor fell as "very shocking" but noted McKellen "was conscious because he was asking for assistance.” The actor was hospitalized and is expected to make a "full recovery."

The play's producers later thanked "our audience and the general public for their well wishes following Ian’s fall during this evening’s performance of Player Kings," adding:

“Following a scan, the brilliant NHS [National Health Service] team have assured us that he will make a speedy and full recovery and Ian is in good spirits.”
“The production has made the decision to cancel the performance on Tuesday 18 June so Ian can rest. Those affected will be contacted by their point of purchase as soon as possible tomorrow. Thank you to doctors Rachel and Lee who were on hand in the audience and to all the venue staff for their support.”

And McKellen himself took to X to thank fans and provide an update on his well-being.

You can see his full post below.

The news of the accident quickly went viral, and the actor's devoted fans sent wishes for a speedy recovery.

McKellen stars as John Falstaff in Player Kings, a production of William Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Parts One and Two. The show began its 12-week run on the West End in April.

McKellen is a seasoned Shakespearean actor, having played roles such as Macbeth, King Lear, Richard II, Coriolanus, Iago, and Richard III. This year, he also portrayed Hamlet in a film adaptation directed by Sean Mathias.

This isn’t the first time McKellen has been injured while performing. In 2018, he had to cancel a matinee performance of King Lear after injuring his leg in a fall while running to catch a train. Instead of the scheduled performance, McKellen treated the London audience to a Q&A session.

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