‘Love Actually’ director feels ‘a bit stupid’ about movie’s lack of diversity



Every year, as the days get colder and Christmas approaches, “Love Actually” quickly becomes a festive favorite on people’s television screens.

But nearly 20 years after the release of the 2003 romantic comedy, the movie has come under scrutiny for its storylines and lack of diversity.

“There were things you would change, but thank god society is changing. So my movie is bound to feel outdated at times, you know,” the film’s writer and director Richard Curtis said earlier this week.

He spoke with Diane Sawyer as part of a documentary on ABC News entitled, “The Laughter & Secrets of Love Actually: 20 Years Later.”

“Love Actually” features intertwined storylines, following various romantic relationships. However, most of the leading cast are white and all relationships depicted are heterosexual.

When asked about times when he might “shudder,” Curtis said, “The lack of diversity makes me feel uncomfortable and a little bit stupid.” He added: “I think there are three plots with bosses and people working for them.”

The film features an impressive array of big names from the entertainment industry, including Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Keira Knightley, Bill Nighy, Colin Firth, Liam Neeson, Martin Freeman, Laura Linney, Martine McCutcheon, Rowan Atkinson and Thomas Brodie-Sangster all appear at some point.

Nearly 20 years later, “Love Actually” remains popular and is becoming a holiday staple.

“It’s amazing how it’s entered the language,” Nighy said in the ABC News documentary.

“People came up to me and said ‘it got me through my chemotherapy’ or ‘it got me through my divorce’ or ‘I watch it when I’m alone’. And people do, and people have ‘Love Actually’ parties.”

When asked if she understood why “Love Actually” had remained popular, Thompson replied, “I do.”

“Because I think we forget, over and over we forget that love is all that matters.”

Curtis has written several other popular romantic comedies, including “Four Weddings and a Funeral,” “Notting Hill,” and “Bridget Jones’s Diary.”

“Four Weddings and a Funeral” was released in 1994 and notably portrayed a same-sex relationship between Matthew, played by John Hannah, and Gareth, played by Simon Callow.

To write in the Guardian 14 years later, Callow said: “It is hard to believe, but in the months following the film’s release I received a number of letters from apparently intelligent, well-spoken members of the public who said they never realized until they saw the saw movie. , that gays had emotions like normal people.”

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