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Sir Ian McKellen Hospitalized: Actor, 85, Slipped Off Stage During Play in London, 'Shocked' Audience Evacuated

sir ian mckellen
Source: MEGA

Sir Ian McKellen was rushed to the hospital after falling off stage during a live performance in London.

Jun. 17 2024, Published 8:00 p.m. ET

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Sir Ian McKellen was rushed to the hospital after falling off stage during a live performance in London, has learned.

The legendary performer, 85, reportedly lost his balance and slipped as he was acting out a fight scene in Player Kings, an adaptation of Shakespeare's Henry IV, at the Noël Coward Theatre Monday evening.

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sir ian mckellen
Source: MEGA

The extent of the actor's injuries were unclear, but an audience member recalled that he appeared to be alert after the fall.

BBC News said McKellen "was circling a battle scene involving the Prince of Wales and Henry Percy, when he fell off the front of the stage." When the lights came back on, the outlet said, McKellen "cried out and staff rushed to help."

Paul Critchley, an audience member, described the incident to the PA news agency, recalling: “Sir Ian seemed to trip as he moved downstage to take a more active part in the scene.”

“He picked up momentum as he moved downstage which resulted in him falling off the stage directly in front of the audience," the attendee continued, adding, "We were evacuated immediately so that Sir Ian could be treated in privacy."

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The extent of his injuries were unclear, but the audience was evacuated and the rest of the show was cancelled as medics treated the actor.

Theater staff reportedly announced the show's cancellation, and informed the audience that McKellen "was receiving treatment and an ambulance had been called," Critchley said.

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"I really hope that he is going to be alright," the audience member said, calling the turn of events "very shocking."

Writer and broadcaster Paul Nero posted about the incident on X shortly afterward, writing, "Audience shocked by Sir Ian McKellen's fall off stage tonight at Noel Coward Theater."

Nero said event staff were "working hard to help [McKellen]," adding, "Thoughts with him, cast and crew."

Another eyewitness told BBC that McKellen appeared to be "conscious" after the tumble off stage, noting that "he was asking for assistance."

Meanwhile, a representative for the theater stated that McKellen will "make a speedy and full recovery," adding that he is "in good spirits."

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sir ian mckellen

McKellen was scheduled to play the role of John Falstaff in Player Kings until the end of the show's run on June 22, and plans for a subsequent tour have been announced.

The seasoned Shakespeare actor also planned to play the lead in a new on-screen adaptation of Hamlet directed by Sean Mathias.

In 2018, a King Lear show was cancelled after McKellen injured his leg while running to catch a train. Instead of performing the show as planned, the actor sat on stage and answered questions from the audience at London's Duke of York Theatre.



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