Belfast Telegraph

Celia Imrie ‘still feels 26’ as she picks up lifetime achievement gong

The star said she is still waiting for her career highlights.

Actress Celia Imrie said she “still feels 26” as she picked up a lifetime achievement honour for more than 45 years in the industry.

The Bridget Jones star, 65, was presented with the prize at the Women In Film And TV awards, but said she still feels that her best years are ahead of her.

She told the Press Association: “I am still looking for the next highlight, because I haven’t even started yet … I still feel like I’m 26.”

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Women in Film and TV Awards

While she admitted she felt “lucky” to still have regular roles, Imrie said it was “great” to see more attention being paid to having more older actresses on screen.

“That’s the cinema that people want,” she said. “There always will be barriers for women to conquer in the industry, but I think we have become a very frightening force.”

Best known for her role as meddling mum’s-best-mate Una in the Bridget Jones series, she admitted that she still watches the films at home, adding wryly: “I think they are marvellous … I wanted a bigger part, of course, but I’m so thrilled I’m in them.”

The glamorous London event was hosted by The Great British Bake Off presenter Sandi Toksvig and was attended by the likes of Sex And The City star Kim Cattrall, Superman actor Henry Cavill and Doctor Foster’s Suranne Jones.

Game Of Thrones actress Gemma Whelan, who picked up the prize for best performance, said her biggest challenge of the year has been conquering both career and motherhood.

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Women in Film and TV Awards

Barely two months after giving birth to her daughter, she said: “I have had a really nice year professionally and I have just had a baby – so I am really tired.

“I haven’t found it a struggle, but it is very important to plan very, very well and think through every eventuality. It means a lot to me to be here today and I feel honoured and privileged to be thought of in the same category as these incredible women.”

Whelan plays Yara Greyjoy in the hit fantasy drama that will come to an end when its eighth and final series airs.

“It feels right,” she said after more than five years on the show.

“Of course we are all very sad that it’s coming to an end, but all good things do and we can’t keep going or it will become like a soap opera. You have to have a definitive end so you can be confident in what you are doing and the fans will be happy.”

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