American actress Meryl Streep used former British Prime Minister MARGARET THATCHER for inspiration when creating her character in remake THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE.

The OSCAR-winning star looked towards 'The Iron Lady' - who ruled the UK from 1979 until 1990 - for ideas on ELEANOR SHAW's dress sense and behaviour.

At a press conference at the Venice Film Festival yesterday (02SEP04), Streep said, "The idea of two quite prominent earrings, the necklace and a pin (brooch) influenced me.

"Margaret Thatcher is very constrained. My character's like a locomotive. In England everyone thinks I'm doing Margaret Thatcher. In the US they think it's Hilary Clinton.

03/09/2004 13:08