On Sunday, McKellen and his 73-year-old friend sat down with CBS' Leslie Stahl to promote "Waiting for Godot" and "No Man's Land." They also discussed their friendship, careers and mutual respect.
"I don't normally take to Yorkshiremen," McKellen joked of Stewart.
Stewart and McKellen first met in the 1970s, but the two men, both knighted by Queen Elizabeth, really bonded over their shared life experience while filming "X Men."
"With that kind of movie, you do tend to spend more time in the trailer than actually on the set," Stewart said. "And we had very comfortable trailers."
The pair told Stahl that they turned to acting as an escape -- Stewart from his abusive father and McKellen from his early struggles as a gay but closeted actor. Both started out on the British stage before roles in television and film. Stewart gained worldwide fame for playing Captain Picard in "Star Trek: The Next Generation." McKellen hit it big with "X Men" and "Lord of the Rings" in 2000 and 2001 respectively.
"We are the same actor, really," McKellen explained.
"We've had the same career. So we're peers. We're equals. We're not rivals," he added.
You can watch clips from the interview over at CBS.
Here they are at Coney Island: