Dame Helen Mirren has spoken about anti-Semitism, after playing a Jewish character in her new film, Woman In Gold. 

Dame Helen Mirren

Dame Helen Mirren

The Oscar-winning actress plays an Austrian Jewish aristocrat, Maria Altmann who must flee from the Nazis. 

After playing a Jewish character, the acclaimed actress reflected upon anti-Semitism in Europe today, saying: Anti-Semitism is still pertinent.”

“People start down that particular road saying they’re nationalistic or proud of their nation, rubbish like that, and set themselves on the first step to horrors”.

“It’s happening again, not just in Europe. It seems to be an endless human story.”

Although the film got mixed reviews, Mirren said: “I hope films can address ideas and thoughts that seep into the culture and push society forward.”

“It’s incredibly important to the way we form our thoughts and understanding of how life is and how to behave.”

In the film, her character flees Vienna, Austria, during the War and battles to reclaim a Gustav Klimt portrait of her aunt which was looted by the Nazis.