Christopher Frank Carandini Lee CBE, CStJ (born 27 May 1922) is an English actor and singer. He initially portrayed villains and became famous for his role as Count Dracula in a string of Hammer Horror films. Other notable roles include Lord Summerisle in The Wicker Man (1973), Francisco Scaramanga in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), Count Dooku in the Star Wars series, as well as Saruman in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Lee’s most important role, according to him, was his portrayal of Pakistan’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah in the biopic Jinnah (1998). Lee has performed roles in over 220 films since 1948. Along with Rock Hudson, Lou Ferrigno, Vincent Price, Sterling Hayden, Vince Vaughn and few others, he is, at 195.6 centimetres (6 feet, 5 inches), one of the tallest leading actors of all time.
Lee was born in Belgravia, England, the son of Contessa Estelle Marie (née Carandini di Sarzano) and Lieutenant-Colonel Geoffrey Trollope Lee of the 60th King’s Royal Rifle Corps. Lee’s mother was a famous Edwardian beauty who was painted by Sir John Lavery, as well as Oswald Birley and Olive Snell, and was sculpted by Clare F. Sheridan. Lee’s maternal great-grandfather had been an Italian political refugee who sought refuge in Australia; his great-grandmother was Australian opera singer Marie Carandini. christopherleeweb.com