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  1. ITV Report

Gary Oldman's performance as Winston Churchill could be his 'finest hour'

British actor Gary Oldman is celebrating a Golden Globe nomination for his role as Winston Churchill in the film Darkest Hour which premiered in London on Monday.

The movie charts the wartime Prime Minister's battle from the secret War Rooms to rally parliament and Britain to fight Hitler.

Gary Oldman used makeup to transform into the role. Credit: Universal/Working Title

But Oldman at first doubted he could play the legendary premiere.

"I laughed and thought don't be ridiculous," he said.

Rather than put on weight for the role, Oldman's opted for makeup to help him transform for the role.

Gary Oldman considered turning down the role. Credit: ITV News

"I'm coming up to a milestone, I'm nearly 60," he said. "And I thought there was no way on earth that I could gain 70 pounds and then spend the rest of my life of what remains losing weight.

"That would be the option. And so makeup was really the only way to go with it."

Gary Oldman as Churchill during filming.

"You have this icon and this man who has been so mythologized," he added. "The silhouette is so iconic and so famous and I really wondered if one could get past all of that and find the man."

Darkest Hour recreates in detail the secret underground world where Churchill worked and the staff working alongside him.

Gary Oldman met Joy Hunter who worked in the War Rooms at 18. Credit: ITV News

Back in the War Rooms where she worked as a typist at the age of 18, Joy Hunter met the new screen Churchill.

"Nobody mixed," she told him. "Nobody talked to each other and you just went and you did your shift work, you were given the work by your supervisor and you gave it back and that was it."

Now also a favourite for an Oscar for Darkest Hour, the movie could prove to be one of Oldman's finest hours.