OSCAR-winner Julian Fellowes was so keen to write the script of his latest film that he told his agent: “If I don’t write it, you die.”

Scriptwriter Mr Fellowes told a packed audience at its world premiere in Bridport about his involvement in The Young Victoria.

The first public viewing of the star-studded dramatisation received a round of applause when it ended at the Electric Palace.

Mr Fellowes enabled the Weldmar Hospicecare Trust to pocket the premiere’s proceeds of more than £10,600.

He took to the stage before and after the showing for an introduction and then a question and answer session.

He joked: “It is the world premiere – I’m not sure if the producers Graham King and Martin Scorsese realised that when they gave us permission.”

Mr Fellowes became hooked on the story of Queen Victoria’s younger years when he chanced on a biography of her many years ago.

He said: “I realised I was totally unaware of her younger life and what she survived to get to the throne.

“It’s true that the Duchess of York suggested to Graham King it was about time people learned of the young Victoria. I heard the film idea was being mooted in Hollywood and my agent asked if I would be interested.

“I told him, ‘Not only am I interested but if I don’t write it, you die’.”

Mr Fellowes’ story follows Emily Blunt, in the title role, through the turbulent first years of Queen Victoria’s rule and her enduring romance with Prince Albert.

Victoria’s childhood was so controlled that she was not permitted to walk the stairs without holding an adult’s hand or sleep alone until she became Queen at 18.

The young Victoria’s love for Prince Albert developed when he advised her to ‘learn the rules of the game so you can play it better than they can’.

Mr Fellowes said the film rarely deviated from real life – as depicted in Queen Victoria’s diaries and letters.

However he made the assassination attempt of 1840 more dramatic to emphasise how amazing it was for the Queen that Prince Albert – who threw himself before the bullet – would put her interests above his own.

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