Letters of love! Dear John was a box office success when it hit theaters in February 2010, boasting the most successful opening weekend for a film based on a Nicholas Sparks novel.
“Dear John was largely modeled on probably the best film love story ever made, Casablanca,” Sparks told Collider at the time of the movie’s release. “This is essentially that story. It’s just a modern, updated twist on that story and, of course, with its own distinct elements.”
The romantic war drama follows Staff Sergeant John Tyree (Channing Tatum) and Savannah Curtis (Amanda Seyfried), who meet when the former is on leave in South Carolina. In the short time they spend together, the pair form a strong bond and agree to continue their relationship via letters.
The pen pals initially plan to start a life together, but their brief stint apart turns into years when John extends his deployment following the September 11 terrorist attacks. Savannah moves on with her neighbor Tim (Henry Thomas), but she never stops loving her longtime correspondent.
Much like their characters, Tatum and Seyfried had an instant connection when they met on the set of the film.
“Right away, I liked him so much. I was like, ‘God, he’s so grounded,’” the Mean Girls actress told Tribute Movies of her costar in February 2010. “He’s funny and casual and doesn’t take much seriously.”
The Magic Mike star, for his part, said of Seyfried: “She just makes everybody laugh and she’s such a free person.”
Tatum also gushed about working with Richard Jenkins, who played his father. “At first [I was] intimidated because I haven’t done a lot of really emotional scenes like that,” the 21 Jump Street actor said, noting that the scenes where he visited Jenkins’ character in the hospital after he suffered a stroke were daunting. “But having someone there like Richard totally makes you forget all that. He’s so present and there for you.”
Tatum and Seyfried also shared their tips for getting through love scenes. “I think you have to laugh through them,” the She’s the Man actor said, while his costar simply chimed in: “Alcohol.”
Despite the pair’s onscreen chemistry, they never dated off screen. The Mamma Mia! star married her Last World costar Thomas Sadoski in March 2017. They welcomed daughter Nina and son Thomas in 2017 and 2020, respectively. Seyfried previously dated Dominic Cooper, Justin Long and Desmond Harrington.
Tatum, for his part, shares daughter Everly, born in 2013, with ex-wife and Step Up costar Jenna Dewan, to whom he was married from 2009 to 2018. The Alabama native went on to date Jessie J and Zoë Kravitz after his divorce.
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