Ian McKellen

"The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" Royal Film Performance - Arrivals

McKellen in 2012, photo by PR Photos

Birth Name: Ian Murray McKellen

Place of Birth: Burnley, Lancashire, England, U.K.

Date of Birth: 25 May, 1939

Ethnicity: Scottish, Northern Irish, English

Sir Ian McKellen is a British actor. His roles include the films Priest of Love, The Keep, Plenty, Last Action Hero, Restoration, Richard III (1995), Bent, Gods and Monsters, X-Men, The Lord of the Rings, Emile, The Da Vinci Code, Flushed Away, The Hobbit, Mr. Holmes, Beauty and the Beast (2017), and The Good Liar.

He is the son of Margery Lois (Sutcliffe) and Denis Murray McKellen. His father was a lay preacher, and his grandfathers were both preachers as well.

Sir Ian’s paternal grandfather was William Henry McKellen/McKellan (the son of James McKellen/McKellan and Elizabeth Williamson). William was born in Chorlton, Lancashire, England. James was Northern Irish, and was the son of James McKellen/McKellan, who was from Ballymena, County Antrim, and was a strict Protestant minister, and of Margaret Dunseith.

Sir Ian’s paternal grandmother was Alice Beatrice Murray (the daughter of William Whyte Murray and Alice Lowes). Sir Ian’s grandmother Alice was born in Barton-upon-Irwell, Lancashire, England. William was born in Scotland, the son of Alexander Murray and Jessey. Sir Ian’s great-grandmother Alice was of Scottish descent, and was the daughter of Robert Jacques Lowes and Jane Macintyre. Sir Ian’s great-great-grandfather Robert J. Lowes was an activist and campaigner, to make Saturday a half-holiday in Manchester, later leading to the five-day work week.

Sir Ian’s maternal grandfather was James Sutcliffe (the son of George Sutcliffe and Mary Carefoot). James was from Lancashire. George was the son of Stephen Sutcliffe. Mary was the daughter of Thomas Carefoot.

Sir Ian’s maternal grandmother was Elizabeth Dora Bannister (the daughter of Robert Bannister and Elizabeth Cleworth). Sir Ian’s grandmother Elizabeth was born in Fulwood, Lancashire, England. Robert was the son of John Bannister and Nanny Chester. Sir Ian’s great-grandmother Elizabeth was the daughter of Joseph Cleworth and Elizabeth/Betty Wilcock.

Sources: Information about Sir Ian’s appearance on Who Do You Think You Are?, 2017 – https://www.telegraph.co.uk

Genealogies of Sir Ian McKellen – http://www.geni.com

Chronology of Sir Ian McKellen’s life, with family history information – http://www.mckellen.com

Ian’s paternal grandmother, Alice Beatrice Murray, on the 1881 England and Wales Census – https://www.familysearch.org

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