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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, 11:41 GMT
Dame Judi plays down Oscar hopes
Dame Judi Dench
Dame Judi Dench will be admitted to hospital before the Oscars

Dame Judi Dench has played down her chances of success at the Oscars, after revealing she will not be at the Hollywood ceremony later this month.

The 72-year-old actress is due to go into hospital for surgery on her leg.

"Don't put any money on me because you'll lose," she told reporters at the Berlin Film Festival.

Dame Judi is up for the best actress prize for her role as a lonely, scheming teacher in London-based drama Notes On A Scandal.

It is her sixth Oscar nomination, and follows her best supporting actress victory in 1998 with Shakespeare In Love.

"The thing about the Oscars, it's strange because in the theatre you would say, 'Break a leg'," she said.

"I can't because I'm to have a knee operation. I can't go to the awards. I'm going to have my leg broken and put back together. I will watch and cheer from my bed."

The Academy Awards ceremony takes place at the Kodak Theatre, Hollywood, on 25 February. Notes On A Scandal is up for four Oscars, including a best supporting actress nomination for Cate Blanchett, who was alongside Dame Judi in Berlin.

The other best actress nominees are Kate Winslet, Penelope Cruz, Meryl Streep and Dame Helen Mirren, who won Bafta's best actress prize on Sunday for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in The Queen.

Dame Judi Dench interview

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