Oh, what a Knight!

Ready for a really great knight?

Here's one I've been waiting for: award-winning actor Sir Ian McKellen is finally bringing back his acclaimed stage show, "A Knight Out in LA."

McKellen 's live one-man show, last here in 1997, will have just two performances on the UCLA campus, in the Freud Playhouse on July 22-23. The shows will benefit the Los Angeles Young Actors' Company, which provides theater experience to young actors, regardless of background.

"I'm delighted to be back onstage in Los Angeles supporting the work of the Los Angeles Young Actors' Company," McKellen says.  "The show lets me revisit favorite parts, tell a few stories, and present Gandalf onstage for the very first time!  My aim is that the audience enjoy themselves as much as I shall, all in aid of the best of causes."

Sirianmcke_terry_9340976_600He's definitely got a lot more material for the show - ten years worth - including his starring role - Gandalf - in the "Lord of the Rings" trilog; the final film earning him a 2002 Oscar best supporting actior nomination.

And he's got fresh fodder, having starred in two major hits this year, "X-Men: the Last Stand" and in the controversial "The Da Vinci Code," playing obsessed holy grail scholar, Sir Leigh Teabing.

It should be fascinating to hear tales of the trials of playing super villain Magneto and perhaps musings on the Catholic church, the grail mystery, not to mention Jesus's descendant, played with limited depth and scant charisma in "Code" by Audrey Tautou.

Shouldn't the topic of Ron Howard casting a perky, pouty-lipped little French actress as the last drop of Christ and Mary Magdalene's bloodline be addressed? No offense, but wouldn't Angelina Jolie have been more believeable in that role?

She's also got great lips, projects intelligence and can drive a get-away car with Lara Croft skill. And she's sure got that self-sacrificial savior-of-the-world act down pat. But I grouse and it's all water under the feet now.

Anyway, as long as McKellen does Gandalf's heroic "You Shall Not Pass!," I'll be happy.

Photo Credits: Hey, wait a minute. This doesn't look like Magneto or Gandalf. Sir Ian McKellen performs in full-on drag at the Royal Albert Hall on July 2, the final night of EuroPride 2006, London's 2-week long cultural festival. Move over, Dame Edna. Sir Ian's Knight Out in LA is sure to be full of surprises.
WireImage/Terry George