Helen Mirren and The Queen
Helen Mirren paid tribute to the Queen at Sunday night’s Baftas in front of the Prince and Princess of Wales.
The British actor has played the late monarch on both the big screen and on stage throughout her long career.
The 77-year-old star, who won both a Bafta and an Oscar for her portrayal of the royal in 2006’s biographical drama, The Queen, described her as a “leading star” on stage at the Royal Festival Hall on London’s Southbank.
Helen Mirren as The Queen (2006)
“Bafta’s relationship with Her Majesty was longstanding and Bafta would not be what it is today without her loyal support,” Dame Helen began.
“In 1953, her coronation broadcast had the world watching. From that time, she was unquestionably the nation’s leading lady but as mysterious as a silent film star.
“Who else could meet the world’s most famous singers, actors and performers and turn them into her supporting cast.
“Throughout her 70-year reign, she met cinema’s greatest icons and witnessed the evolution of Hollywood’s golden age to the birth of the blockbuster. Her Majesty was front row for it all.”
Dame Helen Mirren speaks on stage during the EE BAFTA Film Awards 2023 at The Royal Festival Hall on February 19, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Kate Green/BAFTA/Getty Images for BAFTA)
Dame Helen continued: “Cinema at its best, does what Her Majesty did effortlessly – bring us together and unite us in a story…
“Your Majesty, you are our nation’s leading star. On behalf of Bafta, thank you for all that you have done for our film and television industry.”
During her reign, the Queen had a 50-year association with the British Academy Film Awards, attending many events whilst also supporting the organisation’s initiatives.
In April 2013, the late monarch received an honorary Bafta from Sir Kenneth Branagh at Windsor Castle, for her “tireless support” for the industry.
Queen Elizabeth II receives an honorary Bafta from actor and director Kenneth Branagh in recognition of a lifetime’s support of British film and television at Windsor Castle in Windsor on April 4, 2013.
Over the years, The Queen visited countless film and television organisations, supporting their efforts by shining a light on their work.
In the early 1970s, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh gifted the royalties from Richard Cawston’s documentary Royal Family to Bafta, which enabled the organisation to move into its famous headquarters at 195 Piccadilly, which has remained its home ever since.