Love Actually writer Emma Freud reveals facts we never knew about the film

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Sejal Kapadia Pocha

We don't normally approve of people talking during a film, but when it's Emma Freud, writer of British Christmas hit Love Actually, we're all ears.

At a special screening in New York to celebrate 12 years since the film's release, the writer unexpectedly tweeted throughout the film, offering insights into the fate of characters, plot changes and behind-the-scenes gossip.

Freud, who is also the partner of Love Actually director, Richard Curtis, had a huge part in the film's development which examines nine intertwined stories and the complexities of relationships.

We've lost count the number of times we've watched Love Actually in the last decade, but we sure didn't know these facts...

Alan Rickman and Emma Thompson’s characters do not split up

Love actually scene

Alan Rickman's character Harry "DEFINITELY had an affair" with his secretary Mia (played by Heike Makatsch), writes Freud.

"I begged Richard just to make it a flirtation, but no. the whole way." 

Despite his wife Karen (played by Emma Thompson) learning of his infidelity, Freud says the couple do not divorce but continue their unhappy relationship. 

Rowan Atkinson was supposed to be an angel

Love Actually still

Rowan Atkinson taught us gift wrap is “so much more than just a bag”. Well it turns out his thorough packing had a deeper meaning behind it. 

"Originally Rowan's character over-wrapped the gift on purpose to stop Alan Rickman being able to buy the necklace. Because he was an angel," wrote Freud. 

She also divulged that the scene was filmed in Selfridges at midnight.

Colin Firth and Lúcia Moniz's kiss was choreographed to the tee

Remember when Jamie (played by Colin Firth) sweeps into the restaurant where Aurelia (Lúcia Moniz) works as a waitress and asks her to marry him in a broken Portuguese as the diners watch on? 

It turns out the kiss they share was meticulously choreographed by Freud. "My signature move? His thumb on her lip before they snog," she wrote.

There's a joke behind Colin Firth's character name

It seems director Richard Curtis had an ulterior motive behind naming Colin Firth's character Jamie...

January Jones wrote half her script

Love actually January jones

It's hard to believe that the blonde American woman Colin Frissell (played by Kris Marshall) falls had over heels for in a bar is in fact Mad Men's January Jones. "She was sooooo funny when we filmed that scene," shared Freud. She "wrote half of her lines".

Martin Freeman had a little help for his nude scene

Martin Freeman love actually

The unlikely love story of John (Martin Freemam) and Judy (Joanna Page) kicks off when the pair act alongside each other, fully naked, in an erotic video. 

And in case you wondered, Freeman did wear a little sock in place of underwear during filming. 

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The footage at Heathrow's arrivals terminal are entirely real

The film famously opens and closes with family and friends greeting each other at Heathrow's arrivals terminal. 

It was a family affair

While the film boasts an impressive cast of Keira Knightley, Emma Thompson and Colin Firth, many of the smaller roles were filled by Freud's family. The children in the nativity play were her very own son and daughter, the housekeeper at 10 Downing Street was her mother and Freud herself filled in for Hugh Grant when he knocked on the door of the dancing children.


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Sejal Kapadia Pocha

Sejal Kapadia Pocha covers stories about everything from women’s issues to cult foods. She describes herself as a balance between Hermione and Luna Lovegood.

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