How Sir Ian McKellan Is Feeling After Getting The COVID-19 Vaccine

The first coronavirus vaccine began its worldwide rollout in the United Kingdom after being approved in December 2020. According to BBC News, Margaret Keenan, a 91-year-old British woman, was the first person in the world to receive a COVID-19 vaccine outside a clinical trial. After receiving the vaccine, Keenan said (via BBC News), "It's the best early birthday present I could wish for because it means I can finally look forward to spending time with my family and friends in the new year after being on my own for most of the year.

The Food and Drug Administration authorized Pfizer/BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in the United States on Dec. 11, 2020, per The New York Times. On Dec. 14, 2020, New York City critical care nurse Sandra Lindsay was among the first people in the United States to receive the COVID-19 shot, and she did so during a live video event. "It didn't feel any different from taking any other vaccine," Lindsay said (via The Washington Post). "I hope this marks the beginning of the end of the very painful time in our history," she added (via The New York Times).

In the U.K., the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization revealed who would receive vaccination first, prioritizing older adults living in care facilities, followed by those 80 and older and then frontline healthcare workers. Sir Ian McKellen — who, as of this writing is 81 — fell into the 80 and above category, and he had an over the moon reaction to receiving the vaccine.

Sir Ian McKellen felt 'very lucky' to receive the vaccine

Sir Ian McKellen wasn't the first big name to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in the U.K. Chef and cookbook writer Prue Leith — a judge on The Great British Bake Off – received her vaccination the day before McKellen did. Leith posted a photo of her receiving the vaccination, captioning the shot, "Who wouldn't want immunity from Covid-19 with a painless jab??" She was also filmed by SkyNews getting the injection, and she couldn't even believe that it was already done, asking afterward, "Have you done it? ... I didn't even feel it."

McKellen revealed that he received the first of two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 16, 2020. The actor told the Evening Standard that getting the shot was "painless," noting that it was "a very special day," he also said that he felt "euphoric." He continued, "Anyone who has lived as long as I have is alive because they have had previous vaccinations, the take up amongst the older generation will be 100 percent — 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." After receiving his shot, McKellen tweeted: "I feel very lucky to have had the vaccine. I would have no hesitation in recommending it to anyone."