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Meryl Streep reacts to Margaret Thatcher's death: I 'was honored' to play her

  • Meryl Streep Margaret Thatcher.jpg

    Meryl Streep, left, as Margaret Thatcher, right.Alex Bailey/Pathe/AP

  • Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher

    Meryl Streep as former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the film "The Iron Lady." (Reuters)

Like many others, today Meryl Streep is remembering Margaret Thatcher, the former British Prime Minister who died at the age of 87.

Streep played Thatcher in the 2011 Oscar-winning film “The Iron Lady." She expressed her grief in a statement sent to FOX 411.

“Margaret Thatcher was a pioneer, willingly or unwillingly, for the role of women in politics,” Streep said. “I was honored to try to imagine her late life journey, after power; but I have only a glancing understanding of what her many struggles were, and how she managed to sail through to the other side. I wish to convey my respectful condolences to her family and many friends.”

Streep added that she believes Thatcher impacted women around the world.  

“To have come up, legitimately,  through the ranks of the British political system, class bound and gender phobic as it was, in the time that she did and the way that she did, was a formidable achievement….To have given women and girls around the world reason to supplant fantasies of being princesses with a different dream: the real-life option of leading their nation; this was groundbreaking and admirable,” Streep stated.

The Iron Lady, who ruled for 11 remarkable years, imposed her will on a fractious, rundown nation — breaking the unions, triumphing in a far-off war, and selling off state industries at a record pace. She left behind a leaner government and more prosperous nation by the time a mutiny ousted her from No. 10 Downing Street.

Thatcher was the first — and still only — female prime minister in Britain's history. 

Streep’s portrayal of Thatcher won her the Best Actress Academy Award and the Best Actress Golden Globe as well.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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