With the recent passing of Richard Harris speculation has begun as to whom should fill Harris’ role of Albus Dumbledore in future Harry Potter films, and the current rumor has Christopher Lee as the leading contender for the role. As much as I like Christopher Lee as an actor and as much as I was completely untaken with Harris’ phoned-in non-performance in The Sorceror’s Stone, I think matching up Lee and Harry Potter won’t work for several reasons.
First, we’re talking about Harry Potter. Christopher Lee doesn’t need the work, and Harry Potter almost seems beneath him for an actor of his stature. On the other hand, Star Wars seems beneath him, but that’s because George Lucas is congenitally incapable of either (1) writing or (2) directing, and Count Dooku at least had a mythic stature due to his role in destroying the Old Republic and the Jedi Order.
Second, we’re talking about Albus Dumbledore. Christopher Lee oozes evil, and Albus Dumbledore is not by nature a sinister character.
Okay, that’s only two reasons.
Thinking about the role, I think Tom Baker would be a far better choice. Perhaps even Peter O’Toole. But Christopher Lee? I really can’t picture it.