After Judi Dench lost her husband to lung cancer in 2001 she admitted she wasn't optimistic about finding love again.
But now Dame Judi, 79, has found companionship with boyfriend David Mills and is — for the first time — opening up about finding happiness with her new man.
Judi and David in April 2014. (Photo Credit: Getty)
"He is so lovely, with a great sense of humor," she told 'Time' magazine in a new interview. "Now it's absolutely wonderful because there's somebody who makes me laugh. Isn't it lovely?"
Related Story: Dame Judi Dench Was "Embarrassingly Late" For Lunch With MI6 Chief
The 'Philomena' actress and her farmer beau first met in 2010 when David built a wildlife center on his family's land "just a few fields away" from Judi's home in England.
Judi with her late husband, Michael Williams, in 1982. (Photo Credit: Getty)
Though Judi says the couple are "much too independent" to move-in together or get married, she notes they are perfectly content with their low-key relationship.
"I wasn't even prepared to be ready for it," she told the magazine. "It was very, very gradual and grown up. We got together, in a way, through the animals. It's just wonderful."
Judi — who turns 80-years-old on Tuesday, Dec. 9 — will appear on the big-screen in films including 'The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' and 'Tulip Fever' in 2015.
Your life just got exponentially better and more stylish now you've signed up for our newsletter. Fabulousness awaits!