Love is all around! 2003’s Love Actually may have been mainly focused on England-based romances, but it has become a worldwide holiday staple among its fans.
The rom-com begins five weeks before Christmas and takes viewers on multiple journeys of love and romance. In the weeks leading up to the holiday, 10 separate stories are told, most of which crossover with one another. The thing that binds them all together? Love.
The ensemble includes Emma Thompson, Liam Neeson, Andrew Lincoln, Hugh Grant, Colin Firth and more.
In the film, Neeson’s Daniel tries to navigate the loss of his wife, while guiding his stepson Sam (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) through his first love experience.
Meanwhile, Daniel’s friend Karen (Thompson) is trying to decide how to move forward with her marriage after her husband, Harry (Alan Rickman), begins flirting with his receptionist.
As Karen’s relationship is being tested, her brother David (Grant) is settling into his new role as Prime Minister — which he does by dancing like no one’s watching through his new residence.
Throughout the film, washed-up rock star Billy Mack (Bill Nighy) is focused on his musical comeback, recording “Christmas Is All Around.” The song becomes the anthem for the season that plays in the background as even more love stories unfold, including John (Martin Freeman) and Judy (Joanna Page) who meet while filming a sex scene for a movie.
Romance is in high supply in the fan-favorite holiday flick, especially when Mark (Lincoln) professes his love using cue cards to Juliet (Keira Knightley), whom is married to his best friend Peter (Chiwetel Ejiofor). It can also be seen when Jamie (Firth) learns Portuguese to propose to his housekeeper Aurélia (Lúcia Moniz).
Nearly two decades later, the heartwarming story still resonates with fans who feel it in their fingers and feel it in their toes. Creator Richard Curtis couldn’t be happier about the film’s staying power and how the cast has stayed charming from year to year — even while filming the 2017 minisequel Red Nose Day Actually.
“What was so sweet was that people’s fundamental characters haven’t changed much over 15 years,” Curtis told The New York Times in May 2017, when speaking about the mini-reunion the cast did for NBC’s Red Nose Day. “Keira was cast for the youthfulness and cheerfulness of her spirit, and she is still like that. Bill is everlastingly young and irresponsible; Liam terribly paternal. Hugh Grant behaved well for one week of the original shoot, very badly for the rest, and did exactly the same thing over one day now. It’s rather reassuring.”
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Scroll down to see what some of the main characters in Love Actually have been up to since the film’s 2003 release.