Gandalf Vs Dumbledore

They’re the two most powerful wizards around from two of the most beloved fantasy franchises. So of course, they need to be pitted against each other! Just to keep this battle on the up and up, we’ll only be focusing on their movie portrayals, not the books. The five rounds include the following: comparing their screen personas, magical powers, experience and bravery, foes and who better put their skills to use helping the hero. Join as we pit Gandalf against Dumbledore to see which old geezer rules them all!

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Gandalf Vs Dumbledore

They’re the two most powerful wizards around. Welcome to, and today we’ll be pitting Gandalf against Dumbledore to see which old geezer rules them all!

Just to keep this battle on the up and up, we’ll only be focusing on their movie portrayals.

Round 1: Screen Persona

Let’s begin with the men behind the beards, and the depictions they bring to the screen.

Gandalf is portrayed by English actor Sir Ian McKellen as the mentor with a warm, if sometimes scolding, grandfather-esque demeanor. Though a vagabond with a soft side, he isn’t always laughs and fireworks, as he nimbly bounces between the roles of friend, advisor, and leader.

Meanwhile, English actors Richard Harris and Sir Michael Gambon portrayed Dumbledore as a gentle man of stature. While Harris accentuated the fatherly quality, Gambon was a much more secretive, exhausted and uncertain wizard, literally having to pluck memories to find his answers….

In a jam, we’d rather skip the mind games and have McKellen’s Gandalf around for reassurance and guidance.

Gandalf 1, Dumbledore 0

Round 2: Magical Powers

Gandalf claims that he should not be taken for a conjurer of cheap tricks! However, despite being here to help the mortals with their struggle, he does not use his magic for direct intervention, and therefore never creates anything overwhelming. Instead he uses his staff like a flashlight, force field, to push people over, and perform exorcisms. He is also able to communicate with animals.

The polar opposite, Dumbledore channels his power through his Elder wand to create incredible feats of magic, including a control over all things, including all of the elements. He is also able to make force fields and push people around, and his only limitation is that he refuses to cast any of the Unforgiveable Curses.

All in all, Dumbledore’s got the goods, and his power leaves Gandalf spinning in disbelief!

Gandalf 1, Dumbledore 1

Round 3: Experience and Bravery

While we’ve already established that Dumbledore is more powerful when it comes to pure magic, which is channeled through his wand, there’s more to Gandalf than his powers and knowledge. Gandalf has spent his life on the road protecting the entire world of Middle-Earth, fighting countless forces of evil in the process.

He’s unique for wielding his sword in combat. This makes him certifiably badass, as even at his age he’s to get in the thick of battle while riding horseback, even going so far as to play hall monitor for the Balrog!

Unfortunately for Dumbledore, he has spent too much time in his cozy tenured position as the high school principle. Rather than quit his day job and join Harry in some sort of Fellowship, he’s more than content to let children fight most of his battles…

Gandalf 2, Dumbledore 1

Round 4: Foes

A hero is only as good as the enemy he faces. Gandalf faces Sauron, as well as his former mentor and friend Saruman, who together lead an army unspeakable evil.

Dumbledore also faces a growing threat- however, Voldermort merely has a lust for blood purity of the magical world, which he hopes to achieve by commanding a handful of evil wizards and witches.

As unpleasant Voldermort’s plan is, he isn’t intent on complete genocide, so we’re going to award this point to Gandalf, for facing a more menacing and relentless foe whose power truly reaches everywhere and threatens everyone.

Gandalf 3, Dumbledore 1

Round 5: Helping The Hero

Both Gandalf and Dumbledore’s are the masterminds of their respective movies. However their plans both entirely hinge on helping a youngster dispel the evil.

Gandalf trusts the One Ring to Frodo, who must journey to destroy it by foot in the evil’s back yard.

Dumbledore’s pupil Harry is destined to save his world by building up with strength while locating relics, all so that he can battle Voldermort head-on.

While we admire Dumbledore for settling bureaucratic and judicial hurdles for Harry, Gandalf pretty much sacrificed himself and led an entire battle, taking much of the pain, all so that his underdog friend could make a deposit in Mount Doom.

Gandalf 4, Dumbledore 1


By a score of 4 to 1, our victor is the wizard from Middle Earth.

Don’t fret Dumbledore fans, you can still be proud of his tenure as Headmaster, even if he was a man of words rather than action.

Agree with our verdict, or infuriated by it? Be sure to debate in the comments, and subscribe to for more entertaining versus battles.

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