Ian McKellen Injured His Wrist and Neck in London Stage Fall

Ian McKellen Injured His Wrist and Neck in London Stage Fall

Ian McKellen.
Dave Benett/Getty Images

Ian McKellen is opening up about his recent injuries.

The British actor was hospitalized on June 17 after falling off stage during a production of Player Kings in London. McKellen, 85, now says he hurt his neck and wrist.

“Just two weeks after my accident onstage I want to assure my many well-wishers that the injuries (to wrist and neck) are on the mend,” the X-Men actor shared via X on Tuesday, July 2. “My doctors promise a complete recovery -but only if I avoid work over the next few weeks.”

As a result of his recovery, McKellen said he has dropped out of a touring version of Players King, in which he played John Falstaff. McKellen’s understudy David Semark, who replaced him in the play’s final performances at London’s Noël Coward Theatre, will take over the role during the tour.

“Any actor will say that missing a performance feels somewhat shameful, even when he is not to blame. None of us ever wants to let down our audience,” McKellen shared.

“But Robert Icke’s masterful production remains intact,” the actor continued “His mis en scene is compelling throughout and his actors, led by Toheeb Jimho and Richard Coyle as Prince Hal and his father, remain on top form. Go see for yourself!”

Ian McKellen Cancels Final Player Kings

Richard Coyle (L) and Sir Ian McKellen in Player Kings.
Hoda Davaine/Dave Benett/Getty Images

McKellen was performing in a battle scene in the West End play when he lost his footing and fell on June 17, the BBC reported. He cried out, asking for help, and was rushed to the hospital while the Noël Coward Theatre canceled the show and evacuated the audience.

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“Thank you to our audience and the general public for their well wishes following Ian’s fall during this evening’s performance of Player Kings,” the theatre said in a statement at the time. “Following a scan, the brilliant [National Health Service] team have assured us that he will make a speedy and full recovery and Ian is in good spirits.”

“I want to thank everyone for their kind messages and support,” McKellen said in his own statement via X on June 18. “Since the accident, during a performance of Player Kings last night, my injuries have been diagnosed and treated by a series of experts, specialists and nurses working for the National Health Service. To them, of course, I am hugely indebted. They have assured me that my recovery will be complete and speedy and I am looking forward to returning to work.”

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