On Air Now
The Smooth Sanctuary with Gary Vincent 7pm - 10pm
5 December 2023, 16:18
It’s been over two decades since the release of the iconic romantic comedy, “Bridget Jones’s Diary,” which charmed audiences worldwide with its witty humour and relatable protagonist.
The film, based on Helen Fielding’s novel of the same name, became an instant classic and catapulted its cast to fame.
But where are the stars of this beloved movie now?
As we look back on the impact of Bridget Jones’s Diary, it’s clear that the film not only left an unforgettable mark on pop culture but also on the careers of its talented cast.
Renée Zellweger was best known for her roles in films such as Jerry Maguire (1996), where she starred opposite Tom Cruise, and Me, Myself & Irene (2000) with Jim Carrey, before her iconic role in Bridget Jones’s Diary.
She was born in 1969, which made her 31 years old when the film was released in 2001.
Since the release of the film, Zellweger’s career has continued to flourish. She starred in Chicago the following year, and she won Academy Awards for her performances in Cold Mountain (2003) and Judy (2019).
Her personal life has also been eventful; she had a brief marriage to country singer Kenny Chesney in 2005. Zellweger has also been known for her transformative roles, including the two sequels to Bridget Jones’s Diary.
Before Bridget Jones’s Diary, Colin Firth was best known for his portrayal of Mr Darcy in the 1995 TV miniseries Pride and Prejudice. His performance as the aloof yet romantic hero captured the hearts of audiences and made him a household name.
Colin Firth was 39 years old when Bridget Jones’s Diary was released in 2001.
Since the film’s release, Colin Firth has had a prolific career with a variety of roles in both film and television. He continued to charm audiences with performances in The Importance of Being Earnest (2002), Girl With a Pearl Earring (2003), and Love Actually (2003).
He also starred in the musical Mamma Mia! (2008), the espionage film Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (2011), and the action-comedy Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015). Firth received critical acclaim for his role in A Single Man (2010), for which he was nominated for an Oscar, and he won an Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of King George VI in The King’s Speech (2011).
He reprised his role as Mark Darcy in the Bridget Jones sequels and in 2022, he earned Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for his performance in the HBO Max limited series The Staircase.
Colin married Italian film producer Livia Giuggioli in 1997, and they have two sons together. However, the couple announced their separation in 2019 after 22 years of marriage.
Hugh Grant was best known for his leading roles as the endearing and funny love interest in romantic comedies before Bridget Jones’s Diary. His notable films included Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994) and Notting Hill (1999).
Hugh Grant was 40 years old when Bridget Jones’s Diary was released in 2001.
Since the film’s release, Hugh Grant’s career has included a variety of roles. He took on celebrated roles in films such as Love Actually, Florence Foster Jenkins, Paddington 2, and Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, as well as TV roles including playing Jeremy Thorpe in A Very English Scandal and starring alongside Nicole Kidman and Donald Sutherland in the HBO miniseries The Undoing.
Hugh Grant has five children. He had two children with his previous partner Tinglan Hong, and three children with his wife, television producer Anna Eberstein, whom he married in 2018.
Before the release of Bridget Jones’s Diary, Jim Broadbent was best known for his roles in Terry Gilliam’s films Time Bandits (1981) and Brazil (1985), as well as various TV comedy roles including Slater in Only Fools and Horses.
Since the film’s release, Jim Broadbent has continued to have a successful career with roles in films such as Moulin Rouge! (2001), Gangs of New York (2002), Another Year (2010), The Iron Lady (2011), and Brooklyn (2015).
He is also known for his roles in franchise films such as Horace Slughorn in the Harry Potter film series, Digory Kirke in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005), and Samuel Gruber in the Paddington film series.
Before her role in Bridget Jones’s Diary, Gemma Jones was best known for her work on both stage and screen. She had notable roles in classical and contemporary plays with the Royal Shakespeare Company and was recognized for her performances in television series such as The Duchess of Duke Street (1976–1977) and Kenilworth (1967) as Queen Elizabeth I. She also played the role of Portia in The Merchant of Venice in 1980.
Since the 2001 comedy, Gemma Jones has continued to have a successful career. She has appeared in the Harry Potter series as Madam Pomfrey, won the 2015 BAFTA TV Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the TV film Marvellous (2014), and has had roles in TV series such as Spooks (2007–2008), Teacup Travels (2015–2017), and Gentleman Jack (2019).
Embeth Davidtz was best known for her performances in films such as Army of Darkness, Schindler’s List, Mansfield Park and Bicentennial Man.
Since Bridget Jones’s Diary, Embeth Davidtz has continued to have a successful career in both film and television. She has appeared in movies like Junebug, Fracture, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and The Amazing Spider-Man series. On TV, she has had roles in series such as Mad Men, and The Morning Show. She also guest-starred on Grey’s Anatomy as Dr Derek Shepherd’s sister, Nancy.
Embeth Davidtz married lawyer Jason Sloane in 2002, and they have two children together. She has also been open about her battle with breast cancer, which she was diagnosed with in 2013. She underwent treatment and has spoken about her experience to raise awareness and support others going through similar challenges.
Before her role as Jude in Bridget Jones’s Diary, Shirley Henderson was best known for her portrayal of Gail in Trainspotting (1996) and her performance as Isobel Sutherland in the series Hamish Macbeth (1995–97). She also appeared in Rob Roy (1995) and Topsy-Turvy (1999).
Since 2001, Henderson played Moaning Myrtle in the Harry Potter films, appeared in Marie Antoinette (2006), Anna Karenina (2012), and was nominated for a BAFTA TV Award for Best Supporting Actress for Southcliffe (2013). In 2018, she won the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her role as Elizabeth in the original Old Vic production of Girl from the North Country.
Sally Phillips was best known for her work in TV comedy before Bridget Jones. She co-created and starred in the sketch comedy show Smack the Pony, which ran from 1999 to 2002. She also had roles in I’m Alan Partridge and Green Wing.
She has since appeared in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, and reprised her role as Shazza in Bridget Jones’s Baby.
On TV, she has had guest appearances as the fictional Prime Minister of Finland Minna Häkkinen in the US TV series Veep and played the prison warden on Pennyworth in 2022.
Sally Phillips was married to Andrew Bermejo from 2003 until their separation in 2017, and they have three sons, one of whom has Down’s syndrome. She is a patron of Blue Apple Theatre, which specializes in creating performance work with adults with a learning disability.
Before playing Tom in Bridget Jones’s Diary, James Callis was perhaps best known for his performance in Old Wicked Songs, a two-hander play alongside Bob Hoskins, as well as various TV roles.
Since the film, James Callis is known for playing Dr Gaius Baltar in the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica miniseries and TV series. Since 2017, he has voiced the character Alucard in the Netflix series Castlevania and in 2022, he appeared in Star Trek: Picard as Jean-Luc’s father in childhood flashbacks.
He married Neha Callis in 1998, and they have three children together.