Bridget Jones fans say 'no thanks' as film set to return WITHOUT iconic love interest

Bridget Jones fans have weighed in after it was confirmed a fan-favourite love interest won't be returning for the franchise's fourth instalment. Renee Zellweger, Hugh Grant and Emma Thompson are set to reprise their roles Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy.

12 Years A Slave star Chiwetel Ejiofor and One Day actor Leo Woodall join the cast of the sequel, set for US release on Valentine’s Day 2025. It has not been confirmed when it will debut in the UK.

Two-time Oscar winner Zellweger will be back as beloved Bridget, while Grant will return as rapscallion Daniel Cleaver and Thompson, who starred in the third instalment as Bridget’s despairing obstetrician, also returns. British author Helen Fielding previously said she had decided to write Bridget’s love interest Mark Darcy, played by Oscar winner Colin Firth, out of the third book in the popular series because she didn’t want Bridget to become “a smug married”.

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In the book titled Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy, Bridget is a widow in her 50s with two children, as it is revealed Mark has died some years earlier – although it is not clear what plot the film will take.

Taking to X, formerly Twitter, fans swore to boycott the film unless Firth made an appearance. @Lost_In_Films_ said: "Bridget Jones 4 without Colin Firth, yer no thanks, pointless, he's the only reason I watched & liked the last 3 films, I like him very much" as @levaudevillianv agreed: "I personally will not be partaking in a Bridget jones without mark Darcy. I wish everyone involved what they deserve."

Still from Bridget Jones's Baby trailer of Colin Firth wearing a suit and tie with a neutral facial expression
Colin Firth, who plays Mark Darcy, won't be returning for Bridget Jones: Mad About The Boy -Credit: Universal/PA Wire

@tomwambsgays asked: "what's the point of another bridget jones movie if colin firth isn't in it anymore" as @ForbesLockwood echoed: "I’m sorry but what’s the purpose to make another Bridget Jones’s diary movie? Most of all, without Colin and his Mark Darcy, Bridget’s only love."

Firth reprised his role in the third film in the franchise titled Bridget Jones’s Baby, which saw his character competing with billionaire US love guru Jack Qwant, played by Patrick Dempsey, for the attention of Bridget after she falls pregnant.

The hit 2016 sequel came 12 years after US actress Zellweger adopted a near flawless English accent to portray the hapless singleton in the second instalment titled Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason. The original adaptation titled Bridget Jones’s Diary, starring Zellweger as a 30-something chardonnay-swilling singleton, was released in 2001 to wide acclaim.

Directed by Michael Morris, the film is an original from Universal Pictures with co-financing from Miramax. Zellweger, meanwhile, scored her second Academy Award in 2020 for her leading role as famed singer and actress Judy Garland, following her first win in 2004 for her supporting role as Ruby Thewes in Cold Mountain.