One of Emma Thompson’s all-time most memorable onscreen moments is when her “Love Actually” character discovers her husband (the late Alan Rickman) has been cheating on her, leading her to break down sobbing in what is arguably the film’s most devastatingly emotional scene.
During a London fundraiser on Sunday, Thompson, 58, revealed to the audience that the reason her performance was so raw and real is that she had experienced the same thing in real life.
“That scene where my character is standing by the bed crying is so well known because it’s something everyone’s been through,” Thompson told the crowd, reports the Daily Mail.
“I had my heart very badly broken by Ken,” she admitted, referring to ex-husband Kenneth Branagh. “So I knew what it was like to find the necklace that wasn’t meant for me.”
She added: “Well, it wasn’t exactly that, but we’ve all been through it.”
While Thompson didn’t elaborate on the particulars, Branagh reportedly had an affair with actress Helena Bonham Carter while they co-starred in “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein” in 1994.
Thompson and Branagh filed for divorce the following year, while Branagh and Bonham Carter continued to date until splitting up in 1999.