Last week we reported the cast of Love Actually would be reuniting for a sequel in aid of Comic Relief, and a few of you were quick to point out not everyone would be joining.

Hugh Grant, Keira Knightley, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Bill Nighy, Liam Neeson, and Colin Firth will all be taking part, but the sad death of Alan Rickman last year means we won’t see any more of Harry, the character he played in the 2003 movie.

That also meant it was unlikely his wife Karen, as played by Emma Thompson, would be included in the update, and now the actress herself has confirmed it.

Speaking to PA last night (February 23) at the London premiere of Disney’s live-action reboot of Beauty and the Beast, she said it would be “too sad” and “too soon” to revisit her character.

“Richard [Curtis, the writer] wrote to me and said, ‘Darling, we can’t write anything for you because of Alan,’ and I said, ‘no, of course, it would be sad, too sad.’

“It’s too soon. It’s absolutely right because it’s supposed to be for Comic Relief but there isn’t much comic relief in the loss of our dear friend really only just over a year ago.

“We thought and thought [about it], but it just seemed wrong but to revisit the wonderful fun characters of Bill Nighy and Hugh Grant and Liam [Neeson] and all of that, that’s fantastic, but obviously what would he [Curtis] have done?”

 (L-R) Hattie Morahan, Nathan Mack Josh Gad, Luke Evans, Emma Watson Dan Stevens, Bill Condon, Stanley Tucci and Emma Thompson attend the UK Premiere of "Beauty And The Beast" in London on February 23, 2017. (Photo: Getty Images)
(L-R) Hattie Morahan, Nathan Mack Josh Gad, Luke Evans, Emma Watson Dan Stevens, Bill Condon, Stanley Tucci and Emma Thompson attend the UK Premiere of Beauty and The Beast in London on February 23, 2017. (Photo: Getty Images)

Asked what might have happened to their characters Karen and Harry, whose marriage is rocked by Harry’s affair with a colleague, Thompson added: “Both of them would be in therapy by now and I would be working on some kind of ward.

“It was absolutely the right decision.”

Of course, we don’t need to remind you that Rickman died in January last year aged 69. At the time, Thompson, with whom he collaborated many times in films such as Sense and Sensibility and The Winter Guest, wrote of her immense sadness, having “just kissed him goodbye.”

“What I remember most in this moment of painful leave-taking is his humor, intelligence, wisdom and kindness,” she wrote. “His capacity to fell you with a look or lift you with a word.

“I couldn’t wait to see what he was going to do with his face next […] He was, above all things, a rare and unique human being and we shall not see his like again.”

We shall not indeed. Red Nose Day Actually airs in the U.K. on Friday, March 24, and on NBC in the U.S. on May 25.

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By Kat Sommers
Kat is a freelance writer for Anglophenia.