Billy Elliot’s Stephen Daldry hailed her as “the biggest star ever.”
The filmmaker was referring to Her Majesty The Queen, who on this day celebrates the 70th anniversary of her being crowned sovereign of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
How To Watch The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee: Diana Ross, Nile Rodgers, Sir David Attenborough Get Ready To Celebrate Milestone With Parades And Concerts On BBC And ABC News
Daldry made that comment to this reporter several years ago, during pre-production of Netflix drama The Crown, of which he is an executive producer and occasional director, helping to guide the series through four seasons; the fifth is on its way.
It was the late Roger Michell (Notting Hill) who seemed to capture a sense of why we, all of us if we’re honest, especially over here in Blighty, are fascinated by this horse-loving monarch.
“I think she’s drilled into our subconscious. I think we dream about her. Actually, I think that her impact on our waking and dreaming moments is enormous and very hard to over-estimate,” he told me as he studied footage for Elizabeth: A Portrait in Part(s), a documentary about Elizabeth II, the first monarch in British history to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee. It was to be Michell’s last film.
Michell admitted that he while he was never a monarchist he nonetheless found The Queen “absolutely phenomenal.”
As a child, he thought “my mother was like the Queen, or the Queen was like my mother. I think it’s really primeval.”
We’re moved by the arc of her life, that she has been a constant figure in our lives. For many of us, she’s the only Queen we’ve known.
Helen Mirren (The Queen) has portrayed Her Majesty on stage and screen. ”You know, I was seven when Her Majesty came to the throne and we’re both still here,” the Oscar winner marveled when we spoke earlier this year.
Watching BBC Television’s coverage of today’s first day of the four-day Platinum Jubilee celebrations with the Trooping of the Colour and hearing the whoops of joy emanating from the crowds seemingly encamped on every street in central London, I was struck by the stratospheric levels of affection they have for the 96 year-old head of state.
It’s no wonder that Hollywood stars and Hollywood studio chiefs jump at the chance of attending a Royal Film Performance, especially if it’s in the presence of Her Majesty. Grown men go weak at the knees. Me too.
In my own part of London, the garden square in my street is being transformed by members of the resident’s association, with bunting and much royal paraphernalia for a street party.
Neighbors have created Jubilee cakes and puddings and there’ll surely be a knees-up that will last well into the night. There are thousands of similar parties across the land.
As much as I like watching The Crown and The Queen nothing beats watching a real royal ceremonial occasion on the telly and seeing the real Queen appear on the Buckingham Palace balcony to wave at the throng, and to watch the Platinum Jubilee fly-past of Royal Airforce and Royal Navy aircraft .
The Queen’s smile has lit up the nation today.
Daldry was right. The Queen’s the biggest star.
Must Read Stories
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.