Today sees HM The Queen becoming our longest-serving Monarch, overtaking Queen Victoria.
Much has been written about Queen Elizabeth II this week, the paradox of her being the most public figure in the world, yet one with so little known about her day-to-day existence, and a figure of constancy in the centre of a constantly-changing society.
Of course, this kind of paradoxical existence – the off-centre reference point for the UK’s political intrigue, the soap operas of romance, never mind all the shoes, coats and hats - is tantalising nectar for the Hollywood bees, and a big challenge for any actress wanting to exert her acting chops.
As we know, the fairytale romances we see on the palace balconies, the T-towels and the crockery don’t always bear closer scrutiny, and these cracks in the façade have made for mind-bogglingly dramatic screen fare.
And even for those royal ladies who’ve managed to avoid the pitfalls of a high-profile union, there are, instead, Prime Ministers, military rivals and even enemies in the court cloisters to manage – all screenplay-friendly stuff.
To mark HM The Queen’s special day, here’s a glance at some of the most striking portrayals of female royalty on screen, with our own rating of how successful these actresses were at capturing the essential ingredient that keeps us watching…
Who’s your favourite?
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