The Venice Film Festival is underway and there’s early buzz about ‘The Queen’ starring Helen Mirren.  Variety critics had this to say,

“The Queen” reigned over the weekend on the Lido, where Stephen Frears’ depiction of friction between Tony Blair and Britain’s monarch following the death of Princess Diana earned ovations and launched protag Helen Mirren as an early frontrunner not just for the fest’s best actress prize, but also for Oscar gold.

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That’s the word on the lagoon on Mirren’s bravura performance as Queen Elizabeth II, even per execs from rival studios, not just the pic’s own Stateside distrib, Miramax.