Chiswick's Dame Crowned Queen of Hollywood

Helen Mirren makes it a hat-trick with an Oscar for her regal role

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Chiswick born actress Dame Helen Mirren was crowned Queen of Hollywood at last night's Oscars ceremony winning the Best Actress Award for her role as The Queen.

The Oscar completes a hat-trick of awards for the role and follows a Golden Globe and a Bafta.

Although favourite to win the award, Mirren faced stiff competition from other nominees which included fellow Brits Judi Dench, Kate Winslet as well as Penelope Cruz and Meryl Streep making her the first British actress to win a Best Actress Oscar since Emma Thompson in 1992 for Howard's End.

In her acceptance speech she paid tribute to the Queen saying "I salute her courage and her consistency and I thank her because if it wasn't for her I most certainly would not be here."

She added "My sister told me all kids love to get gold stars - this is the biggest and best gold star I've ever had in my life."

Born Ilynea Lydia Mironoff in 1945 in Chiswick, Helen Mirren is the daughter of an English mother and a Russian aristocrat father stranded in London after the 1917 Russian Revolution.

She realised she wanted to become an actress from a very early age. She joined the National Youth Theatre, where she first made her mark at the age of eighteen playing Cleopatra in Shakespeare's Anthony and Cleopatra (1965) at the Old Vic.



February 26, 2007