Helen Mirren Opens Up About Being a Sex Symbol at 71: Label Is ‘Probably Going to Follow Me to My Grave’


She’s still got it! Helen Mirren opened up in a new interview about being labeled a sex symbol at 71 years old.

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“I think it’s probably going to follow me to my grave,” the Collateral Beauty star told AARP The Magazine for their latest cover story.

Mirren’s enviable physique has been celebrated for decades. The Oscar winner showed off her fit frame in form-fitting ensembles in films such as 1981’s Excalibur. As fans will recall, she donned a number of skin-baring ensembles in the movie as sexy Morgana. And in 2003’s Calendar Girls, she went completely nude.

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Mirren’s curves became the center of attention again in 2008 when she was photographed in a revealing, red bikini while celebrating her 63rd birthday on the beaches of Puglia, Italy. Regardless of her youthful appearance, the Hollywood vet told AARP that she has embraced the aging process.

“The best thing about being over 70 is being over 70. Certainly when I was 45, the idea of being 70 was like, ‘Arghhh!’ But you only have two options in life: die young or get old,” Mirren explained. “There is nothing else.”

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She continued: “The idea of dying young when you’re 25 is kind of cool — a bit romantic, like James Dean. But then you realize that life is too much fun to do that. It’s fascinating and wonderful and emotional. So you just have to find a way of negotiating getting old psychologically and physically.”

During her chat with the magazine, Mirren also revealed why she eventually agreed to marry husband Taylor Hackford despite the fact that she previously placed her career over her love life.

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“I did very consciously choose my work over my relationships right up to the time that I met Taylor,” the actress — who wed Hackford in 1997 — said. “I was 38 when I met Taylor, pretty late in life.”

Helen Mirren and Taylor Hackford
Helen Mirren and Taylor Hackford on November 29, 2016 in Saint-Denis, France. Marc Piasecki/WireImage

After more than a decade together, Mirren and Hackford decided that it was time to tie the knot. “We got married in the end because we realized that we were going to be together forever,” she said. “We got married, ultimately, for legal reasons more than anything else. Estate planning and other complicated things like that. And our families, we sensed, wanted us to be married.”

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Though becoming a bride was never at the top of Mirren’s priority list, she insisted that she was never once against the idea of walking down the aisle. “I always said I have nothing against marriage. It just wasn’t to my taste, like turnips,” she told AARP. “It took me a very long time to come around to acquiring the taste. I just had to meet the right turnip.”

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