A “Lord of the Rings” aficionado experienced the ultimate fan encounter, and his amazing experience was captured on video.
In the video, a man is seen from behind, walking down a street in Britain, sporting long hair and a beard while holding a blue stick while costumed as Gandalf the wizard from the “Lord of the Rings” movies.
Walking alongside him was an older gentlemen wearing a hat, with the two engaged in conversation.
When the camera moves to film the men from the front, the man in the cap is revealed to be none other than Sir Ian McKellen, who portrayed Gandalf onscreen.
“POV: for your mates’ 22nd he dressed as Gandalf and bumped into THE IAN MCKELLEN,” reads the video’s caption.
Uploaded by TikTok user Scarlet Learmonth, the video has been viewed more than 3.5 million times, and received more than 830,000 likes.
Speaking with the Lancashire Telegraph, Learmonth revealed that the guy dressed as Gandalf was her friend, 22-year-old Ben Coyles, who was in the midst of a “Lord of the Rings”-themed pub crawl in Bristol, and is a huge fan of the movies.
“We were on the penultimate pub on the pub crawl and as we’re walking there someone comes up behind me and asks if he’d like our Gandalf to meet the real Gandalf,” said Felix Spencer, another friend who was part of the pub crawl.
“I assumed it was someone just joking around, but when I turn around to talk to him, he gestures towards his friend. It takes me a while to realize at first, but then I see that it is, in fact, Ian McKellen,” Spencer continued.
“I spoke to him briefly but he was very polite and kind and definitely excited to see that people were dressing up as characters from a film he really enjoyed making,” Spencer added.
“It was such a shock but also a beautiful and magical moment,” said Learmonth. “I am so unbelievably happy for Ben and to be part of this exciting occurrence.”