‘Love Actually’: Keira Knightley Admits Juliet’s Hat Was Hiding Something From Fans
Keira Knightley was very young in ‘Love Actually’
Knightley played Juliet, a woman who got married to Peter (Chiwetel Ejiofor). The best man at the wedding was Mark (Andrew Lincoln), who was secretly in love with her.
By the end of the movie he professes his feelings for her. But fans probably didn’t know Knightley was only 18 at the time. Lincoln was 30 years old and Ejiofor was 26 years old. This means Knightley was closer in age to 13-year-old Thomas Brodie-Sangster, who played Sam.
Script editor Emma Freud claimed other young actors would be cast in the role of Juliet today. “I know Richard [Curtis] would cast either Saoirse Ronan or Lily James as the young bride,” she said according to Bustle.
But there are multiple cast members who would be kept in their roles. “Lots of them would be the same,” Freud said. “Hugh [Grant] was a surprisingly young Prime Minister, but would be searingly realistic now. And there will never be a better Karen than Emma (Thompson), even when she’s 90.”
The hat was hiding a zit
Costumes are sometimes used to hide things on actors. Knightley admitted Juliet’s hat wasn’t about fashion.
“I had a massive spot in the middle of my forehead,” she told BBC Radio 1. “This is the problem with being 17 and being in films!” The actor added, “It was humongous, so there was no choice but to find a hat to cover it — because there was no lighting or makeup that was going to cover it.”
The zit was so big that all they could do was cover it up. “I was actually very grateful for that hat,” she said. “I have a lifetime of gratitude for that hat.”
Juliet’s wedding dress was changed
Juliet almost had another weird fashion moment. “Richard Curtis wanted [Keira’s] character to be kind of sexy, even as a bride,” costume designer Joanna Johnston told Grazia. “He wanted her to be dressed ready for the end of the scene where they’re partying, so he had this idea of a crop top, with a bare tummy.”
Johnston went a bit more subtle with a form-fitting sheer dress. “I told Richard, ‘You don’t want a bare tummy going into church!'” she said. “So I went for a sheer, layered style instead with petal details underneath; gauzy and multi-layered.”
The 2003 movie has some interesting fashion choices. Some of them were for practical reasons like the hat hiding a zit. But the wedding dress was most likely to emphasize the bride being young.