What a naughty duo! In a new interview, Ian McKellen candidly revealed that he and his actress friend Judi Dench once broke the ultimate unwritten crime by sitting on Queen Elizabeth‘s throne. “Buckingham Palace brings out the worst in you!” Ian joked during a Friday, Nov. 9 appearance on the Graham Norton Show.
The Lord Of The Rings actor, 79, admitted that the incident happened one night after he and Judi, 83, attended dinner at the palace. “Once the banquet was over, we followed music into another room that looked vaguely familiar,” Ian recalled. “We were dancing around when we realized it was the throne room.” Oops!
You’re probably thinking, “What could be worse than sitting on the throne of all thrones?!” Well, Ian also revealed another time that he had a bad run-in at the Queen’s home. “I was doing a concert at Buckingham Palace and was given a dressing room right next to the balcony and decided to have a [cigarette] on it,” he admitted. “I was standing out there smoking with a view of The Mall when there was a searchlight on me and a policeman down below shouted up, ‘Sir Ian, don’t forget you’re in Buckingham Palace!'”
The story only gets funnier. Apparently, six months later, Ian came across the same exact policeman at Buckingham Palace who yelled at him for having a cigarette on the royal grounds. “I was there to get a medal,” he began. “And as I walked through the gate with a friend, the same policeman said, ‘Not you two again!'”
The Mr. Holmes actor also discussed his upcoming one-man show tour, Ian McKellen on Stage, which will run from January through August 2019. His tour is going to take him all across Europe, with a final performance at the National Theatre in London on Sept. 15, 2019. Profits from the 80-date tour will go towards each of the theaters that he is set to perform in. The money will also benefit specific causes such as talent development and technical improvements for the theater community’s outreach programs. How awesome!