Richard E. Grant struggled with his drag costume in 'Everybody's Talking About Jamie'.

The 63-year-old actor plays Loco Chanelle, the drag queen alter ego of Hugo Battersby, in the film adaptation of the popular stage musical and explained how he needed padding to give him womanly hips.

Richard told the Daily Mail newspaper's Baz Bamigboye column: ''The boy shape is different.

''They had to pad up a bit, where ladies bulge out at the side more than boys do.

''The two wardrobe ladies were incredibly patient. It took two months of back and forth to get it right.''

The 'Withnail and I' star also explained how the custom made shows he wore in the film were ''agonising to wear'' and left him struggling to walk.

Richard said: ''They were agonising to wear, but they looked great!''

He joked that his walking resembled that of Dame Julie Walters' comic character Mrs. Overall.

He explained: ''I was walking like Julie Walters playing Mrs. Overall.

''The idea that you could spend thousands of pounds to wear - custom-made Jimmy Choo's, and be in a state of torture... I just don't get it.''

The star admitted that his preparation for the flick - which is slated for release in October - has helped him appreciate the effort women put in ''to get all glammed up''.

He said: ''Just the amount of stuff you have to deal with: corsets, girdles, shoes, make-up! It's high maintenance in a way that jeans, a T-shirt and a pair of plimsolls is not.

''My appreciation and respect for what women do, compared to men, went up the chart very quickly.''

Richard's character helps Jamie (Max Harwood) find a dress to wear to his school prom but he admitted that he needed ''a lot of pep talking'' from director Jonathan Butterell before taking the part, which required him to take singing lessons and learn a Northern accent.

He said: ''My worry was, how is anybody ever going to believe I'd been a successful drag queen in Soho in the 1980s?!''