Sir Ian McKellen tried to explain the power of the 'pounamu' at the Oscars
Honorary Kiwi Sir Ian McKellen says he was teased by Maggie Smith for wearing his pounamu pendant to the Oscars.
Appearing on the Graham Norton show on Friday in with pals Sir Patrick Stewart and Hugh Jackman, he revealed that he wore his greenstone gift to Hollywood's biggest night back in 2002.
"When those films were nominated for something like 20 Oscars, on that night everyone from New Zealand was wearing their greenstone."
Recounting a hilarious red-carpet exchange with Maggie Smith (with a spot-on impression), he said the doyen of Downton asked him about the necklace and he told her it was for good luck.
"And at the end, of course, everyone else wins the Oscar apart from you....A bit dejected, you're coming out, looking forward to a drink and you bump into Maggie Smith [again] and she points at you and says 'didn't work, did it?'."
The full Graham Norton Show episode will play this Friday at 8pm on Three.