An old interview with the upcomingFast 8 star has recently resurfaced on the Internet, demonstrating that Mirren knew just how to shut down sexism back in 1975.
Forty years ago, 30-year-old Mirren was already an accomplished stage actress in the U.K., taking up roles on television and about to portray Lady Macbeth with the Royal Shakespeare Company. However, didn’t stop Michael Parkinson, host of the long running talk show Parkinson from introducing her as "a sex queen" and proceeding to ask the actress sexist questions throughout the interview.
"You are, in quotes, a serious actress," Parkinson said to Mirren in the interview, using air quotes.
"In quotes?" Mirren fired back. "What do you mean, 'in quotes?' How dare you."
"Serious actress, as opposed to an unserious actress,” the talk show host attempted to clarify to Mirren's visible wincing. "Do you find it to be fact that, what could be best described as your equipment hinders you in that pursuit [of being considered a serious actress]?"
"I'd like you to explain what you mean by my 'equipment' in great detail," Mirren coldly stated.
"Your physical attributes," Parkinson answered.
"You mean my fingers?" Mirren countered.
It was when Parkinson finally managed to get out the word, "figure," that Mirren got straight to the point. "Because serious actresses can't have big bosoms, is that what you mean?"
"I think it might detract from the performance, if you know what I mean," Parkinson pushed.
"I can't say that would necessarily be true. I mean, what a crummy performance is people are obsessed with the size of your bosom over anything else. I would hope that the performance and the play and the living relationship between all the people on the stage and all the people in the audience would overcome such… boring questions, really," the actress clapped back.
Watch Mirren's expertly thrown shade in the video below.
Though the Internet is just revisiting Mirren's interview, it was an experience the Woman in Gold star will never forget.
"I was terrified. I watched it and I actually thought, 'Bloody Hell! I did really well!'" she told The Telegraph in 2011. "I was so young and inexperienced. And he was such a f**king sexist old fart. He was. He denies it to this day that it was sexist, but of course he was."