When news of the Love Actually sequel for Red Nose Day was announced yesterday, eagle-eyed fans quickly scoured the list of returning cast members and spotted some notable omissions.
Alan Rickman, who passed away last year, was understandably absent but so was his on-screen wife, Emma Thompson, who over the course of the 2003 film discovered her husband’s affections lay elsewhere.
It made sense – the 10-minute short film, titled Red Nose Day Actually, is intended to “see what everyone is now up to”. With a Rickman-shaped gap in the line-up, it would be tricky to carve out Thompson’s storyline without definitively separating them.
But appearing on Victoria Derbyshire earlier today, Curtis confirmed that the Oscar-winning actress may crop up in the sequel after all. When quizzed on her involvement, he replied, cryptically: “Oddly, we’re not quite sure. It’s all been done in a great rush and I think not but I’m now thinking again.”
Thompson wouldn’t be the only cast member to do her best to make an appearance in the Comic Relief short film.
“Amazingly, nobody said no,” Curtis revealed. “Liam [Neeson] flew over yesterday from America and is going back to America tomorrow. There is a lot of affection for the film.”
Meanwhile, Curtis’s partner and script editor Emma Freud revealed just how much work had to be done to get the sequel’s script up to scratch.
“I’ve never been more useful as a script editor than I was on this because the first draft he did on this was SO bad that I told him we absolutely shouldn’t do this and we should abort the plan. And he rewrote it and rewrote it and it’s quite good now but it’s very much for Red Nose Day. We’ve tried to hook it into that at every point and that felt a bit like a crowbar at the beginning but it’s working quite nicely now.”
The Love Actually sequel is currently filming in London with Neeson and co-star Thomas Brodie-Sangster on set today. It will air during Red Nose Day on 24th March.