Sir Ian McKellen gets vaccinated against COVID-19

By Zach Harper

Sir Ian McKellen gets vaccinated against COVID-19

COVID-19 shall not pass! Sir Ian McKellen has become one of the first celebrities in the world to be vaccinated against the novel coronavirus, receiving a shot on Dec. 16.

The beloved Lord of the Rings star got his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine at Queen Mary's University Hospital in London, and said he was "euphoric."

"Anyone who has lived as long as I have is alive because they have had previous vaccinations," the 81-year-old wrote on Instagram.

The United Kingdom has prioritized health care workers and older people for the Pfizer vaccine, which requires two shots: an initial dose, and a booster to be administered three weeks later.

The Oscar-nominated actor is also urging people to get inoculated against the novel coronavirus, which has sickened more than 74 million people worldwide this year, according to the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Nearly 2 million of those cases have been in the U.K.

"The take-up amongst the older generation will be 100 per cent – it ought to be - because you're having it not just for yourself, but for people who you are close to – you're doing your bit for society," Ian later added in an Instagram post.

"I would have no hesitation in recommending [the vaccine] to anyone," he said.

"It is invasive, of course –it looks like a weapon, a needle – but it isn't, it's a friend!" he later said, according to ITV.

Hospital staff in Coventry, England applaud after Margaret Keenan, 90, became the first person in the U.K. to receive the COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 8. Photo: © JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

The U.K. began vaccinating citizens against COVID-19 last week, with 90-year-old Margaret Keenan becoming the first person in the country to receive a dose.

Canada has approved the Pfizer vaccine and has also begun administering doses to health care workers and older and high-risk people first.

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