Richard Curtis says he was ‘stupid and wrong’ to use ‘fat jokes’ in films such as Love Actually and Bridget Jones

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Richard Curtis says he was ‘stupid and wrong’ to use ‘fat jokes’ in films such as Love Actually and Bridget Jones


Director Richard Curtis has stated he was “stupid and wrong” to use “fat jokes” in his movies following criticism from his daughter Scarlett Curtis.

The 66-year-old is one of Britain’s most successful directors, having his breakthrough success with 1994’s Four Weddings and a Funeral before giving us iconic romcom favourites such as Love Actually and Notting Hill. However, in recent years, we, as a society, have become more aware of problematic fatphobic jokes in media that centre around mocking someone’s body size.

Richard’s activist daughter Scarlett also pressed him over the “growing criticism around the ways your films treated women and people of colour” during an appearance at The Times and Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival. “As your daughter, I can confirm that you’re a wonderful man, and I like to think I’ve taught you a lot about feminism. So this is by no means the moment I cancel my dad live on stage. But in the last few years, there has been growing criticism from a lot of people about the ways your film, in particular, treated women of colour,” Scarlett began.

She added: “Just to name a few of my faves: ‘tree trunk thighs’; Bridget [Jones] being overweight when she’s just a very skinny white woman; multiple counts of inappropriate male behaviour in Love Actually including the actual prime minister; a general feeling that women are visions of unattainable loveliness; and the noticeable lack of people of colour in a film called Notting Hill, which was quite literally one of the birthplaces of the British black civil rights movement.

Scarlett asked: “Are there things you wish you’d done differently?” Richard was quick to express his remorse for how his films have aged.

Dave Benett



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