For Bridget Jones fans, the wait is almost over: the third movie in the series, Bridget Jones’s Baby, hits cinemas this month.
And now, the film’s producer has hinted that this might not be our final chance to see Bridget on the big screen. There might be many more movies to come – following Bridget into her old age.
“There are other stories out there,” said Eric Fellner at a press conference in London, ahead of the world premiere of Bridget Jones’s Baby on Monday, when asked if he would be making more Bridget Jones films.
“The thing that’s really interesting about the Bridget Jones films is that unlike James Bond, where the character gets recast at the same age, we’ve been able to follow a character or a series of characters and show them as they move through their lives,” he continued.
“And why not? Why can’t we follow these characters into their fifties, sixties and seventies? We’ll have to wait and see.”
Fellner, the co-chairman of Working Title Films, cited Helen Fielding’s third Bridget Jones novel – Mad About The Boy, which tells the story of Bridget in her 50s – as a possible source of inspiration for a fourth film.
“We haven’t seen Bridget go through the menopause yet,” joked Sharon Maguire, the director of Bridget Jones's Diary and Bridget Jones's Baby.
Mad About the Boy would have to undergo some serious plot revisions before it makes sense as a movie, however, since – spoiler alert! – it depicts Bridget as a widow, attempting to move on from the death of Mr Darcy.
And Colin Firth’s character has been kept very much alive in Bridget Jones’s Baby. Speaking at the press conference, Renee Zellweger said that it was the chance to reunite with her Bridget Jones castmates that had tempted her out of her six-year hiatus from acting.
“I don’t really think of it as stepping back into the limelight,” she said. “I’m spoiled rotten for friendships that I have on this set, so it was more about that.”
“I was curious about a lot of other things,” she said. “I’d made a lot of promises to myself in life – ‘Oh, I’d love to do this’ – and when you make films, the cycle is continuous. When you’re beginning one, you’re promoting another, and they overlap, and there’s not much time to explore other things.
“I wanted to learn something that had nothing to do with researching a character, and wanted to learn some things beyond the scope of what you’re exposed to in Hollywood,” she said. “And I was craving a little normalcy.”
Zellweger joked that she hoped her time away from Hollywood had made her “a little less boring than I might have been”.
“I have a new perspective and gratitude, a lot of gratitude,” she said. “Because I missed it, and to come back and begin again with this old extended dysfunctional family, that was a really nice way to begin again.”
Bridget Jones’s Baby is in cinemas 16 September.
Images: Working Title Films, Rex Features