Love Actually’s Child Stars Thomas Brodie-Sangster & Olivia Olson Mark 20 Years Since Iconic Film

30 November 2022, 12:33 | Updated: 23 December 2022, 14:44

By Hayley Habbouchi

Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Olivia Olson have been reflecting on 20 years since Love Actually.

Love Actually is one of the most iconic Christmas classic movies around and there’s not a festive period that goes by without fans swarming to watch the star-studded ensemble cast in the 2003 flick, starring the likes of Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman, Liam Neeson, Martine McCutcheon and Colin Firth.

Now 20 years on from the rom-com, Diane Sawyer sat down with the cast in The Laughter & Secrets of Love Actually: 20 Years Later - A Diane Sawyer Special, which aired Tuesday evening on ABC.

WATCH: Roman Kemp Finally Watches Love Actually & Gives Brutal Review

Two of the stars who sat down with Diane include the child stars of the film, Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Olivia Olson, who played lovestruck Sam and his American crush Joanna, respectively.

Reflecting on two decades since his first major movie role, Thomas told Diane that he 'couldn't even believe it had been 20 years' since the film came out.

Sam and Joanna in Love Actually, 2003
Sam and Joanna in Love Actually, 2003. Picture: Alamy
Thomas Brodie-Sangster 20 years on from Love Actually
Thomas Brodie-Sangster 20 years on from Love Actually. Picture: ABC
Love Actually starred an impressive ensemble cast
Love Actually starred an impressive ensemble cast. Picture: Alamy
Liam Neeson played Daniel in Love Actually; Sam's step-dad
Liam Neeson played Daniel in Love Actually; Sam's step-dad. Picture: Alamy

He said: “I watched it for the first time this past Christmas since the premiere. And I'd forgotten how good it was.”

Fans will remember that Thomas’ character Sam was in love with his American classmate, Joanna, and convinced himself that if he can become a drummer, he could win her over during the school’s end-of-year show.

He’s then supported by his on-screen step-dad Daniel (played by Liam Neeson), whose wife Joanna had recently passed away.

Raving about how incredible the Taken actor was with him on-set, he said: “I mean, Liam was amazing. He treats me like his son. He was absolutely loving to me. Just created this environment where I was very comfortable.

“At the time, I thought, you know, I was pretty much a grownup, and I'd been doing this a few years now. I kind of knew what I was doing. So, I was very serious about it. But no, looking back, I'd forgotten how small and new I was.”

Love Actually aired in 2003
Love Actually aired in 2003. Picture: Alamy
Olivia Olson 20 years on from Love Actually
Olivia Olson 20 years on from Love Actually. Picture: ABC
Olivia Olson in Love Actually, 2003
Olivia Olson in Love Actually, 2003. Picture: Universal Pictures

Meanwhile, Diane also caught up with Olivia, who is still a musician living in California today.

Olivia, who also replicated her iconic rendition of Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’, said of her first major role: “I mean, when I look back at it, I'm really proud that I was part of something so massive.

“Every Christmas, I get the calls and the texts. ‘Hey, look what I'm watching’. I think it's grown so much and it's become such this, like, nostalgic piece of our holidays.”

She even revealed that she still has the original script of Love Actually that she had autographed by the entire cast!

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