Dame Helen Mirren admits there are fewer roles for older actresses.

The Oscar winner is among the most sought-after stars in Hollywood, but admits that ageing makes it harder for the majority of actresses to secure good parts in films.

Asked whether she gets most of the best roles among the older actresses, Helen told The Independent newspaper: ''Well, I think I'm very lucky to have managed to hold on for as long as I have.

''There are less roles now. But then, when I was young I never got the roles anyway. So, it's like, 'It's my turn now.'''

Asked why this was the case, the 69-year-old actress said: ''I don't know. I think I was too fat. Too fat and not pretty enough.''

Helen also explained that she's already prepared for her 70th birthday, saying: ''I've been telling everyone I'm 70 for the past two years.''

The star of 'The Queen' added: ''I knew I was getting near 70, so I just decided to say, 'You know, I'm 70'. It's perfect for me, because I'm surprised that I'm not 70 already.

''Like, 'Wow, I'm only 69. That's fantastic.'''