9 stars who could play Theresa May on TV

Theresa May has just become Britain's new Prime Minister and we're already imagining the TV dramas, films and comedies portraying her in the years ahead. But who could play her? We've come up with nine famous female stars, and Vicious and Rising Damp star Frances De La Tour is our current favourite…

Here are our nine actresses who could step into the kitten heels of Prime Minister May should she ever get the TV biopic treatment...


1 Frances De La Tour (see above)

Just like our new PM, Frances is tall and has an air of authority about her. We still remember her as the giant headmistress Madame Maxime in the film Harry Potter. She definitely kept her female pupils in line, which would be a great lesson for Theresa if there are too many rebellious MPs in the House of Commons.


2 Meryl Streep

Who better than Oscar-winning Meryl to play another Iron Lady?

Who better than Oscar-winning Meryl to play another Iron Lady? (Image credit: Everett/REX/Shutterstock)


The Hollywood great has already played a British PM, when she swung a handbag as Margaret Thatcher in the 2011 film The Iron Lady. If there’s one actress who can nail a peculiar voice and mannerisms it’s Meryl Streep. Theresa’s Home Counties accent will be no problem as Meryl can carry off just about any dialect there is! She'd probably be able to pin-point it to the street in Eastbourne where Theresa was born.


3 Keeley Hawes

Would Keeley make Theresa as tough as Line of Duty's Lindsay Denton?

Would Keeley make Theresa as tough as Line of Duty's Lindsay Denton? (Image credit: BBC/World Productions/Steffan Hi)


As Line of Duty’s accused DI Lindsay Denton, Keeley played a woman as tough as they get, right up to the moment she was shot in the head. We can picture Keeley as no-nonsense Theresa, but maybe without all the murder and guns! And for Theresa’s more tender moments, Keeley could also draw on her portrayal of loving mum Louisa in The Durrells...


4 Julie Walters

Mo provided Julie with a Bafta ...

Mo provided Julie with a Bafta ... (Image credit: Joss Barratt)


As far as female politicians in TV dramas go, we’ll never forget Julie’s brilliant BAFTA-winning portrayal of national icon, Mo Mowlam, in the Channel 4 drama Mo. Julie's voice and mannerisms were impeccable and really brought across her determination as she fought for peace in Northern Ireland while battling a brain tumour. And if Theresa ever became a moral crusader, Julie could draw on the time she played Mary Whitehouse on TV in 2008!


5 Tracey Ullman

Tracey Ullman Merkel

Tracey gave us a comedy Angela Merkel


In her BBC1 comedy sketch show earlier this year, Tracey became German chancellor Angela Merkel, with the help of good prosthetics. We’re sure Tracey would love to get her comedy teeth into Theresa for the second series next year. We loved how Tracey gave Angela a great sidekick in Birgit (Samantha Spiro) to share make-up tips and gossip while attending world summits. So what quirks would Tracey give Theresa? And who could be her sidekick?


6 Lindsay Duncan

'Maggie Maggie Maggie!'

'Maggie Maggie Maggie!' (Image credit: Great Meadow Productions)


Lindsay proved to be a very forceful Margaret Thatcher in 2009 for a BBC1 drama about the last days in office of our first woman Prime Minister. She also shone as Winston Churchill's wife Clementine earlier this year on ITV, so maybe she has a taste for political roles! We think Theresa’s probably more Clemmie than Maggie!


7 Annette Badland

EastEnders aunt babe

Aunt Babe and Theresa...anything in common yet? (Image credit: BBC/Jack Barnes)


Annette's currently playing Aunt Babe, the most hated woman in EastEnders. So if Theresa ever turns nasty for a TV drama and tries to blackmail one of her cabinet colleagues, who better than Annette to stomp around 10 Downing Street plotting and backstabbing? Theresa hasn’t sunk to depths of unpopularity in the polls quite yet, so an Annette/Aunt Babe version of our PM may be a way off yet…


8 Julie Hesmondhalgh

Would Julie jump at the chance to play Theresa?

Would Julie jump at the chance to play Theresa? (Image credit: S Meddle/ITV/REX/Shutterstock)


Since flinging away that famous red anorak when Hayley Cropper died in Coronation Street, Julie has taken a variety of roles in TV dramas such as Moving On, Happy Valley and Cucumber, so why not a Prime Minister next? In fact, we could see it reuniting Julie with Roy Cropper actor David Neilson, who we think could be the perfect fit for Theresa’s husband, Philip


9 Helen Mirren

From royalty to premiership?

From royalty to premiership? (Image credit: Snap Stills/REX/Shutterstock)


Helen’s played plenty of powerful women before, from the Queen to Prime Suspect’s DI Jane Tennison. And if any future TV drama wanted to show a sexier side to Theresa May (heaven forbid!), the Oscar-winner is renowned for passionate scenes and a relaxed attitude to nudity…


Nicholas Cannon
TV Content Director on TV Times, What's On TV and TV & Satellite Week

I'm a huge fan of television so I really have found the perfect job, as I've been writing about TV shows, films and interviewing major television, film and sports stars for over 25 years. I'm currently TV Content Director on What's On TV, TV Times, TV and Satellite Week magazines plus Whattowatch.com. I previously worked on Woman and Woman's Own in the 1990s. Outside of work I swim every morning, support Charlton Athletic football club and get nostalgic about TV shows Cagney & Lacey, I Claudius, Dallas and Tenko. I'm totally on top of everything good coming up too.