Helen Mirren has amassed a devoted following throughout her more than 50-year career as an actor, and her devotion to natural aging has only increased her appeal.

Mirren began her career as a theatrical performer, joining the Royal Shakespeare Company before making her stage debut in London’s West End in 1975.

However, the now-78-year-old did not become a household figure until later in her life; she was 35 when she won her big part as a gangster’s girlfriend in ‘The Long Good Friday’ (1980), alongside Bob Hoskins.

Mirren had previously prioritized her job above finding a spouse and having a family. However, she met her current husband, US film director Taylor Hackford.

“I was 38 when I met Taylor, which is pretty late in life,” she said in a 2016 AARP interview, remembering how the filmmaker kept her waiting for an audition when they first met. When she ultimately won the role, the two got to know one other, and their friendship developed from there.

Mirren and Hackford were eventually able to bond over their shared working-class upbringings.

The future newlyweds also connected over their love of travel and seemed to have a similar perspective on narrative, since both were in the entertainment sector.

Even though Hackford’s two children from previous marriages accepted Mirren’s partnership with their father, she remained adamant about becoming a mother herself. She did, however, express her admiration for Hackford’s commitment to being the greatest dad possible for his children.

The couple eventually tied the knot in 1997, having realized they were destined to be together forever. By that time, they had been in a relationship for over ten years.

The Notorious Swimsuit Photo
Jump to 2008, and Mirren went viral due to a photo her husband took of her at the beach, surprising both fans and the actress herself!

While on a romantic beach getaway in Italy, the couple found a secluded spot to enjoy the stunning views privately.

The Queen in a bikini: ohnotheydidnt — LiveJournal - Page 12

Mirren reminisced about taking a photo of her husband before he quickly snapped one of her. She mentioned that she had sucked in her stomach for the pose when she noticed a small flash in the distance and ducked down behind the rocks, suspecting a paparazzo.

Her husband looked around but couldn’t see anyone, dismissing her concerns as paranoia. Nevertheless, the photo of Mirren in a red bikini was published by a tabloid and quickly went viral.

Years later, the actress reflected on this during an appearance on Ellen DeGeneres’s talk show, calling the photo a stroke of luck and saying: “I look at that picture and think, god, I wish I looked like that.”

Helen Mirren: 'I have experienced insecurity all my life'

Years later, people remain amazed by the image of Mirren, who was 63 years old when the photo was taken. Many online commenters noted that they don’t look nearly as good, despite being much younger.

In 2014, just before her 68th birthday, the Oscar winner addressed the famous photo in an interview with People, saying: “The truth is I don’t look that good; it was just a flattering picture.”

She continued: “I am really past the age for wearing a bikini. I wouldn’t usually wear one. I look like a woman in her 60s. I’ve always looked terrible in a bikini, even when I was young.”

What do you think of Helen Mirren’s stunning bikini photo? Share your thoughts in the comments!

If you enjoyed this article, you might also be interested in reading about Julie Andrews’s rare public appearance at age 87.