Bridget Jones, embodiment of female fears and complications, faced a dilemma that stretched across two books. After both Bridget Jones’ Diary and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason were published, the idea of turning her adventures into film quickly followed.
In its conception stage, problems started for the film. Director Sharon Maguire wanted Hugh Grant to play cad Daniel Cleaver at all costs and it took two years to convince him to sign on. Known for being choosy, Grant did not like the script. He suggested Richard Curtis (Notting Hill creator) hop on board to inject his witty twist to the writing. As soon as Curtis accepted, Hugh signed on.
With Grant and Colin Firth (as Darcy) vying for Jones’ affections, the 2001 film was a box office success. It reduced on the Cleaver / Jones relationship given in the book but the rivalry between the two men was still apparent, with fans taking sides. So, when it came to The Edge of Reason’s turn, it was decided that Daniel Cleaver, barely mentioned in the second book, should reprise his role as antagonist to Darcy. Grant took it upon himself to help write the script and Daniel’s character. This second film premiered in 2004, to less success and more criticism but was, nonetheless, a hit with fans.
Scripting and pre-production for a third instalment in the film series started years ago. Meanwhile, author Helen Fielding has published Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy with a storyline which is nothing like that of the upcoming film.
Darcy is dead in the book, whilst real life Cleaver aka Grant lately tweeted that he had “declined BJ3 four years ago.” The film sets out to get Bridget pregnant with a still-alive Darcy but missing a rival in love and it is time to call in the script-doctor again. This time, according to The Sun, it’s actress Emma Thompson, the actress and script-writer of an awesome adaptation of Sense and Sensibility. Will Emma, a friend of Hugh Grant’s, manage to lure him back into the game with her prose? Fingers crossed as only time, it seems, will tell.