Queen-protector's daughter Alice St. Clair channels Kate Middleton for Hallmark

william-and-catherine-alice.jpg Alice St. Clair is a Lady who also knows how it feels to be a princess.

In her first major role, the British actress -- whose father is not only an Earl, but also the security chief for Queen Elizabeth II -- portrays Kate Middleton in "William & Catherine: A Royal Romance," Hallmark Channel's movie about the courtship that debuts Saturday, Aug, 27. Fellow newcomer Dan Amboyer plays Prince William to St. Clair's Kate, with two-time Emmy winner Jane Alexander as the Queen.

"My mom calls my dad the most discreet man in Britain," St. Clair tells Zap2it. "His job is so private, he doesn't mention anything to us about work. We just know not to go there, so he would never tell me anything about what really happens and I would never ask.

"He was so excited and proud, though, when I got this role. I would do my scenes with Jane, then at the end of the day I would think, 'I wonder if Daddy's been hanging out with the Queen today, too. We've probably both been doing similar things.' "

Since "William & Catherine" ends with the proposal, St. Clair didn't have to re-create any Royal Wedding moments. However, that doesn't mean she wasn't watching the nuptials

 with much of the rest of the world on Friday, April 29. "I'm quite pleased we didn't have to" do such scenes, St. Clair says, "because I don't know if we could have beaten the real deal."

St. Clair initially kept her own royal heritage a secret from "William & Catherine" director, co-writer and executive producer Linda Yellen, wanting her acting to be the overriding factor to earn her the part.

"They were casting in New York, Los Angeles and London," she reports. "When they had me come to London, I knew they'd really looked around for their Kate, and I felt even more happy. I enjoyed doing it thoroughly, and hopefully it works."

Now a New York resident, St. Clair realizes "it is so ironic" she had to be in America to get cast as arguably her homeland's now-most-famous daughter.

"It's this massive, nervous feeling that no one's seen me yet in anything," she reflects. "It's a lot of pressure. I have absolute faith that the film will look good, but I hope people think I do a good job of portraying Kate. Even if they don't like the movie, I hope they think I'm OK."
Photo/Video credit: Hallmark Channel