Ian McDiarmid thinks he got "lucky" amid the coronavirus lockdown.

Ian McDiarmid

Ian McDiarmid

The 77-year-old actor - who is best known for playing Emperor Palpatine in the 'Star Wars' film franchise - was able to escape some of the challenges of lockdown by retreating to his house in Scotland.

He explained: "I’m dead lucky because I’ve got a house in Scotland on the North Sea, where I go a lot.

"Lockdown for me was much easier than it was for many, many people. But even there, after a while, silence becomes oppressive rather than a delight. The sea and the birds can only take you so far after a year and a half – although they take me quite far.

"I didn’t really miss much, except people’s company."

Ian remains conscious of his own age - but he's still determined not to "surrender to it".

The 'Return of the Jedi' star - who was born in Carnoustie in Scotland - told The Independent: "I am old. I’m made aware of that in little things, day by day. But I think the thing is not to surrender to it.

"I never describe myself as old. If I knock over something I say it’s not my age, it’s just me knocking over something. That’s how I’ll deal with it."

Ian also insisted that, in many ways, he doesn't feel his age.

And the actor loves to hear that he looks younger than his really is.

Ian - who has won Olivier and Tony awards during his career - said: "I feel younger. People who are trying to be nice say, ‘Oh no, you look sort of...’ and I think, ‘Can I maybe get a 55? … in your sixties?’ OK, we’ll settle for that."