Love Actually director shares regret over Keira Knightly ‘stalker’ plot

Screenshot of a scene from Love Actually starring Andrew Lincoln and Keira Knightley

Love Actually director and writer Richard Curtis has explained that he now finds the “stalker” plot in the classic Christmas film between Keira Knightley and Andrew Lincoln “a bit weird”. 

The iconic scene, which has been recreated by everyone from the Love Actually cast on Red Nose Day, to Boris Johnson, to SNL, sees Mark (Andrew Lincoln) silently confess his love for his best friend’s wife Juliet (Keira Knightly) using handwritten cards. 

Curtis explained that he was “taken by surprise” to find that people had dubbed the plot the “stalker scene”, and now said he finds it “a bit weird”.

“He actually turns up, to his best friend’s house, to say to his best friend’s wife, on the off chance that she answers the door, ‘I love you’,” Curtis told The Independent. “I think it’s a bit weird.” 

The director, 67, added: “All I can say is that a lot of intelligent people were involved in the film at the time, and we didn’t think it was a stalker scene.

“But if it’s interesting or funny for different reasons [now], then, you know, God bless our progressive world!”

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Richard Curtis has previously spoken out about certain aspects of the 2003 film, claiming fat jokes throughout the movie “aren’t any longer funny”. 

When interviewed by his 28-year-old daughter Scarlett at Cheltenham Literature Festival, he explained that she had changed his mind about fat jokes, saying: “In my generation, calling someone chubby [was funny] – in Love Actually there were jokes about that. 

“Those jokes aren’t any longer funny.”

He continued to explain how much he had learnt from his daughter, telling the Independent: “I’m surprised that anyone’s surprised that a writer would look back 10 or 20 years and say ‘we live in a very different world’.

“She’s right on almost everything she says, and I hope that she’ll like [Curtis’ latest film Genie] and that I’m making progress.”

Fans of Love Actually have recently been sharing a heartbreaking lesbian storyline that was cut from the film, showing the headmistress (Anne Reid) of the school that hosts the final Christmas concert as she supports her partner Geraldine (Frances de la Tour) through a terminal illness.

In a later scene that was also deleted, Karen (Emma Thompson) gives a speech at the Christmas concert, saying: “I’d just like to say to our headmistress, on behalf of all the parents, that we think it’s very brave her being here today in light of her recent loss.

“Geraldine was a wonderful and wicked woman, and sorrow is particularly hard at Christmas.”

Director Richard Curtis has previously said that he regretted the storyline not making it into the final cut, and that the idea behind it was to show that “any character you come across in life has their own complicated tale of love”.

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