SAVANNAH, Ga., Nov. 5 (UPI) -- British actor Ian McKellen was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 13th annual Savannah Film Festival, organizers said.
McKellen was presented with the prize after Thursday night's screening of his film "Gods and Monsters." The Shakespearean-trained actor is also known for his work in the "Lord of the Rings" and "X-Men" movies.
"It's an honor to be at the Savannah Film Festival," McKellen said upon receipt of his award.
He then reminisced about his first visit to Georgia.
"The governor very generously announced that he'd like to make the day of my visit Ian McKellen day in Georgia -- until one of his aides pointed out that it was the third Monday in January and that date was already reserved for Martin Luther King," McKellen said.
"So he puzzled about, and then he said 'I know what we'll do, I'm going to make McKellen a lieutenant colonel in my gubernatorial forces.' So you're now looking at the only openly gay man who is legally allowed to serve in the American military."