Dame Helen Mirren has revealed the contents of a letter she sent Queen Elizabeth II while filming the 2006 biopic The Queen.
Mirren won an Oscar and a Bafta for her portrayal of the British monarch in the film, set around the time of the death of Princess Diana.
According to Mirren, she contacted the Queen after grappling with the weight of the film’s subject matter.
“I realised we were investigating a profoundly painful part of her life, so I wrote to her,” the actor told Radio Times.
“How do you write to your queen? Was it Madam, or Your Highness, or Your Majesty?
“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’. 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.”
While Mirren said she did not receive a personal response from the royal, she did get a letter from the Queen’s secretary.
“I was very relieved subsequently that I had written that letter,” she added.