Dame Judi Dench tells of saving her goldfish with the kiss of life

Danny Thompson
·Contributor
·2 min read
Dame Judi Dench attends the reopening of the Ashcroft Playhouse at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon. PA Photo. Picture date: Monday September 16, 2019. See PA story SHOWBIZ Dench. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire (Photo by Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images)
Dame Judi Dench attends the reopening of the Ashcroft Playhouse at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon. Photo credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire (Photo by Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images)

British acting legend Dame Judi Dench has revealed she once brought a goldfish back to life by giving it the kiss of life.

The 85-year-old actress is best known for her mesmerising roles in theatre and on screen, but she recently told how she is also a dab hand at resuscitating small pets.

Dench told of the incident during an appearance on the Chris Evans - How To Wow podcast.

Read more: Dame Judi Dench doesn't like being called a national treasure: 'I don’t want to be a relic'

She told Evans: “My goldfish recently died. I once gave it the kiss of life.

“It died when it was very little and I gave it the kiss of life and it grew to be six inches long. We kept it in a nice tank.”

The episode also sees the star discuss her stint as M in the James Bond franchise.

She told how she was forced to complain to producer Barbara Broccoli as her co-star Daniel Craig often got to visit glamorous destinations as Bond, but M is only ever in “that office”.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22:  (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK TABLOID NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 48 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME. MANDATORY CREDIT PHOTO BY DAVE M. BENETT/WIREIMAGE REQUIRED)   Dame Judi Dench (L) and Daniel Craig attend a photocall for the new James Bond film 'Skyfall' at The Dorchester on October 22, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Dave M. Benett/WireImage)
Dame Judi Dench (L) and Daniel Craig attend a photocall for the new James Bond film 'Skyfall' at The Dorchester on October 22, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Dave M. Benett/WireImage)

She said about her role: “I am very pleased I did. It was just wonderful but I was kept in that office all the time and I complained to Barbara Broccoli and said, ‘Everybody goes to glamorous places and I am in that office all the time’.

“We did one of them when we were at Stowe School and I was in this big trailer with Innsbruck written along the side.

“They said, ‘You can never complain again because you have been in Innsbruck’.”

Dench added: “But I loved it. I was drunk with power. As M, I just played it like the person in the script, hopefully, and like the intention.

Read more: Judi Dench makes Vogue cover history

“She got to tell Bond off quite a lot and be quite bossy and I had to assert myself a bit, as there has not been a woman M before.

“I went about it like playing any part. You rely on the director and the people you are acting with and hope for the best. I also say hope for the best and make the most of the parties.”

Chris Evans - How To Wow podcast is available online now.

Watch: Dame Judi Dench on ‘national treasure’ label