What Dame Maggie Smith Looked Like When She Was Younger

Have you seen pictures of Helen Mirren when she was younger? She was just as stunning as she is now! The same goes for Betty White, who was simply lovely as an up-and-coming actor. Martha Stewart was so striking that she began modeling when she was just a teenager. And if we're mentioning older stars who used to be really attractive, then we can't possibly ignore Dame Maggie Smith.

Nabbing her first role way back in 1955 when she appeared on BBC Sunday-Night Theatre, Smith has worked steadily for over 60 years. Her decades-spanning career is surely due to her undeniable talent and, in part, because of her camera-worthy looks. You've likely seen her as Mother Superior in 1992's Sister Act, Constance Trentham in 2001's Gosford Park, and Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry's Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter film franchise. Additionally, you might also recognize her as Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham from Downton Abbey.

Although many of Smith's later gigs cast her in the role of a wise (and often intimidating) elder, she was once a young woman just getting her start.

Maggie Smith was 'an undeniable dish'

When you think about Dame Maggie Smith, you probably envision a woman who looks like a distinguished grandmother. However, when she first entered show business, she was an attractive young actor whose features were perfectly suited for the screen. However, she apparently didn't consider herself to be a great beauty.

When addressing the fact that she was described as "an undeniable dish" in a review during the 1960s, according to NPR, Smith denied the summary of her appearance while also explaining why she wasn't keen on being limited by her looks. "That never was me. The 'dish' department didn't apply," she claimed. "I think it's got something to do with one not being a 'dish' ... because then you become a character actor and you have much more chance of developing and going on."

"I mean, God knows it must be lovely to be beautiful, but that's a really difficult thing to lose," she continued. She may not have been eager to be simply seen as a beautiful face, but the fact is that she was definitely a stunner.