Helen Mirren wrote a letter to the queen before representing a “profoundly painful” part of her life

 Helen Mirren wrote a letter to the queen before representing a “profoundly painful” part of her life

Spoiler alert: The queen did not write her back.

Queen Elizabeth II was contacted before Helen Mirren portrayed a “profoundly painful part” of the monarch’s life in the 2006 movie “The Queen,” according to Helen Mirren.

The queen’s response to Princess Diana’s passing is the main topic of the film. When the Princess of Wales passed away, the monarch received criticism for choosing to stay at her house in Balmoral with Prince William and Harry rather than going back to London right away to pay her respects.

“I said, ‘We are doing this film. We are investigating a very difficult time in your life. I hope it’s not too awful for you,’” Mirren told the Radio Times in this week’s issue.

“I can’t remember how I put it. I just said that in my research I found myself with a growing respect for her, and I just wanted to say that,” the actor added.

“She didn’t write back, of course, but her secretary did,” Mirren said. “You know, ‘Yours sincerely, da di di di da,’ on behalf of the Queen. I was very relieved subsequently that I had written that letter.”

The actor claimed that she also found a way to be at peace with the fact that she would be portraying a reigning monarch before taking on the part, for which Mirren received her first Oscar. Since this was “long before ‘The Crown,'” she claimed that it “hadn’t been done before.”

“I thought, ‘Are you allowed to do that?’ I looked at portraits when I did [the 2005 drama series] ‘Elizabeth I’ and thought, ‘What I’m doing is another portrait,’” Mirren reasoned.

“And there are so many portraits of Elizabeth II, paintings and photographs ― this is mine,” she added. “That liberated me.”

As she has encountered the British royal family at a few events, Olivia Coleman, who played Queen Elizabeth II in Netflix’s popular historical drama “The Crown,” has commented on the difficulties of portraying current members of the British royal family.

Coleman met the monarch’s grandson, William, not long before she assumed the part of the queen in “The Crown,” and the two had a somewhat awkward encounter.

“I met Prince William at a dinner and he asked me what I was doing at the moment, before he quickly added, ‘actually, I know what you’re doing,’” Coleman said during a 2019 stop by “The Graham Norton Show.”

″’I was so excited and asked, ‘Have you watched it?’” she exclaimed, before adding that “His answer was a firm, ‘No.’”

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