Emma Thompson has explained why she won’t be taking part in Red Nose Day Actually, the short sequel to Christmas favourite Love Actually currently being filmed by Richard Curtis for Comic Relief, saying that the death of co-star Alan Rickman last year makes it “too sad” to be a part of the project.
Many had speculated that the death of Rickman was the reason behind Thompson not returning with fellow stars Hugh Grant, Bill Nighy, Liam Neeson, Martine McCutcheon, Colin Firth and Keira Knightley among others. Now the actress has described how she and Curtis came to the decision.
“Richard wrote to me and said, ‘Darling we can’t write anything for you because of Alan,’” Thompson told PA, “and I said, ‘No of course, it would be sad, too sad’.
“It’s too soon,” she added. “It’s absolutely right because it’s supposed to be for Comic Relief, but there isn’t much comic relief in the loss of our dear friend really only just over a year ago.
“We thought and thought but it just seemed wrong but to revisit the wonderful fun characters of Bill Nighy and Hugh Grant and Liam (Neeson) and all of that; that’s fantastic but obviously what would he have done?
“Both of them would be in therapy by now and I would be working on some kind of ward. It was absolutely the right decision.”
The 10-minute sequel to Love Actually will take place 14 years after the original film in the present day, and will catch up with the majority of the movie’s cast – including Rowan Atkinson’s over-zealous shopworker Rufus, who was seen filming in a Sainsbury’s yesterday.
Curtis also suggested last week that the ever-fluid nature of the production could mean Thompson would be involved after all, but in more recent comments ruled out her appearance.
Red Nose Day Actually will be broadcast on BBC1 during Comic Relief’s TV fundraiser on Friday 24th March