The Rosie O'Donnell Show

Guest Host: Carolyn Rhea
April 16, 2001

Carolyn Rhea: Our next guest has a lot to be happy about. In addition to becoming a father for the second time just two weeks ago, he's currently starring in the new romantic comedy Bridget Jones's Diary and he gets to meet me.  Please welcome the charming and talented Colin Firth.

[Colin enters and kisses Carolyn on cheek. She is visibly thrilled. He waves to audience.]

CR:  Oh my.  I can't get back in my chair. How are you?

Colin:  I'm well, thank you. How are you?

CR:  By any chance did you send me flowers for my birthday?

CF:  No I sent jewels.

CR:  Oh, you sent jewelry.  Well, thank you. OK. I am so thrilled to meet you. I think you are the most magnificent actor and I've loved you in everything you've ever done.

CF:  Thank you.

CR:  And your name was? No. Now, you star as...This is your first American talk show?

CF:  Yes, this is my first live talk show for 15 years.

CR:  Really?

CF:  So yeah.

CR:  Why is that?

CF:  It's a little bit scary.

CR:  You know what? I could tell you I was Rosie because you don't even know that. But I'm just a temp. 

CF:  You are? OK.

CR:  I'm just temping. Rosie's not here. But I'm a huge star here. [prompts audience for applause] I saw Bridget Jones this weekend. It is magnificent and you are fantastic as Mark Darcy

CF:  Thank you. Thank you.

CR:  Did you love doing it? Was it fun?

CF:  I did. Absolutely. It's not new for me, playing someone called Mr Darcy...

CR:  Yes  I know,  Pride and Prejudice, I'm very well aware, I'm a stalker.

CF:  Oh yeah?

CR:  You were fantastic.

CF:  It's an endlessly recyclable commodity this thing now. Mr. Darcy . I could be a Darcygram, you know.

CR:  Alright, shall we set up a clip?

CF:  Alright, yeah.

CR:  Will you tell us which particular clip this is from Bridget Jones's Diary? What's  happening?

CF:  OK, is this 'I like you just the way you are' or is this...?

CR:  OK, go for the punchline. Yes, it's that one. OK, yeah, it's that one.

CF:  No, this is the very unsympathetic and aloof and cold and difficult man actually declaring that that's not the way he really is and that she shouldn't be afraid of him.


CR:  Ah [hand over heart] How romantic! [CF smiling] You're incredibly romantic, but what does help  when someone's romantic is Van Morrison just in the background coming through.

CF:  It does help actually, yes.  It's easy enough to say that stuff but if you could cue the music it would win everytime.

CR:  Did you know it was down to me and Renee Zellweger for that part?

CF:  No I didn't.

CR:  In fact, I even went ahead and gained the weight. I did...Alright, you're not believing me at all. I was  trying. No. She was fantastic in it. Now, you just had a baby boy?

CF:  I did, yeah, Luca.

CR:  Luca?

CF:  Yeah

CR:  Your wife is Italian, right?

CF:  She is, yes.

CR:  Do you speak Italian?

CF:  I speak a little bit of Italian. My vocabulary's improved over the last couple of weeks cause I now know the words for things like burp and wipe and diaper. 

CR:  How is he? How much did he weigh when he was born?

CF:  He weighed 8 pounds, which for a two week early baby is...

CR:  Oh, he was two weeks early?

CF:  Oh yeah.

CR:  And are your Italian relatives gushing over him like crazy?

CF:  They are. I pretty well have to book an appointment now to see him. All the uncles and aunts, and all the doting...yeah. It's very difficult to say anything sensible about having a new baby because, you know, you're in this period when you're just reduced to jelly. I just spoke to him on the phone this morning and he burped and that was enough to...

CR:  He burped. Did you feel it was a personal burp?

CF:  It was for me.


CR:  It's Dad!

CF:  It was for me.

CR:  I know, they're the cutest. Don't you just want to eat their faces?

CF:  It's very difficult not to eat them.

CR:  It is. It's very difficult. I've had a whole ear in my mouth many times with my nephew.

CF:  I've had to actually physically put myself in another room in order to avoid doing that...

CR:  Does he look like you or does he look like your wife?

CF:  He looks a little bit like a turnip at the moment. But I mean, you know, a beautiful turnip, as root vegetables go...But, yes, he's adorable.

CR:  Are you getting recognized here...a lot?

CF:  Yes, more than I used to.

CR:  Do you get recognized from Shakespeare in Love?

CF:  Hopefully not from Shakespeare in Love. I get recognized occasionally from that. It's... being recognized in this country is rather different from being recognized in England.

CR:  How so?

CF:  Well here generally people are...they're very uncomplicated about it. People will just come up to you and usually they're a big fan.

CR:  Right.

CF:  Right. You know, that's what they'll come up and say. In England, it's actually very entertaining. What you get is a very surreal and oblique way of telling you that they like your work. Such as 'I thought you were  terrible in the film' or...

CR:  (laughing) They said they thought you were terrible?

CF:  Oh yeah they've done that before. [using different voices and mannerisms]  'I saw you in that film last night. You were terrible, weren't you?' Or else they'll say, 'You're Colin Firth' but they'll make it sound like an accusation, so it will be, 'You're Colin Firth.' And I'll say, 'Yes, alright, you've got me. It's true, I confess.' 
And then they'll look at you for a second and say, 'No you're not.' 'Well, it's my name and everything, you know, okay...'  'Ma, this guy here reckons he's Colin Firth.' So I'll say, 'All right, game's up. I'm not Colin Firth.' And go, 'Yes, you are, you're not fooling me.' So in this surreal situation of actually trying to convince people you're not who you say you're not.

CR:  It's very weird for me because some celebrities are tremendously intimidating, but I seem to be the kind of celebrity where people like fans come up to me and eventually say, 'I've got to go,' because I'm like blah blah blah blah blah blah Mistress Chatty. So like anyway...Your movie is amazing. I also love The Advocate. I could stare at you all day. Could you just quickly say hello to my sister Celia, just casually into the camera before we go?

CF:  Your sister...?

CR:  Celia.

CF:  Celia, hello Celia (waves to camera)

CR:  OK, now I don't have to get her anything for her birthday. Anyway, thank you so much for being here.

 CF:  Thank you.

[Audience applauding end of segment before commercial]

CR:  I'm sorry I do tremendously love you, so I'm totally nervous. We will be back with more Colin Firth. No, I'm not letting him go, sorry!


After commercial, they show Shakespeaere in Love clip with Wessex.

CR:  We are back with my friend, Colin Firth.

CF:  I’m still here.

CR:  You’re still here, I know, I dismissed you earlier and now I refuse to let you go.

CF:  I won’t go.

CR:  Did you know it was down to me and Gwyneth for that part?

CF:  You had to put on weight for that too?

CR:  Yeah, I did.  Alright, that was mean.  To audience: Don’t you boo him! That’s Mark Darcy and Mr. Darcy from Pride and Prejudice.

CF:  To audience: I’m talking about putting on weight to look like Gwyneth (gestures indicating thin)

CR:  Right! To audience: See, he was being charming.  Thanks for interpreting the wrong way.  One of your favorite movies of mine (sic) is The Advocate.  To audience: Ever see it?  It’s a fantastic movie.  Very sexy.  You got a lot of action in that movie.

CF:  Yes, I did.  I had a variety of leading ladies one of whom was quite special to me and I see you have a photograph.

CR:  I do, and she had to gain weight for the part too (shows pic to audience) This is an actual pig.

CF:  To audience: This is Sally.  And Sally loved me.  I don’t want to sound vain but that pig loved me.  She’s half domestic Tamworth and half wild boar and therefore considered very dangerous.

CR:  Half wild boar and half what?

CF:  Tamworth, it’s a pig you know, and the boar part of her is dangerous, I mean, boars just are.  And the crew all had poles and Tasers and all kinds of things to keep her at bay.  They were very worried about my safety.  And I had a scene in a cage with her and she just came over, this ferocious creature and laid down across my feet and went to sleep.  And from that day on, there was this extraordinary bond with this pig.  She just had this passion for me and every time I walked into a room full of people, she would leave everybody else and come over to me for me to scratch her.  And we did a photo shoot, we met again about a year later for a glossy magazine.

CR:  Was it a clandestine thing?

CF:  No, there were other witnesses.  The photo shoot took place on the 8th floor and pigs don’t like to go into elevators—this is another thing about pigs that I didn’t know.  And the only way she would go into the elevator is if I went into the elevator.  It worked.  I walked in and she followed me in and again, we had a brief wonderful encounter.  But I’ve heard nothing for her for about 7 or 8 years, so I have to conclude that she’s shallow. 

CR:  The pig blew you off!  I can’t believe it, Colin.

CF:  Yes, it’s heartbreaking.  It’s very cruel of you to bring the photograph.

CR:  Sorry to bring up a painful memory.  Now, what does your beautiful Italian wife do?

CF:  She’s a producer of documentaries.

CR:  And is that how you met, was she producing you?

CF:  She was assistant producing me in a drama I was doing, a somewhat ill-fated production of Nostromo in South America.  [Very wryly to audience] You all know Nostromo.

CR:  Could you play along, folks, you’re like, huh?

CF:  No, that’s the reaction you get, Nostromo isn’t . . .

CR:  It’s your charm. You know what?  It’s like they’re Sally, they’re mesmerized by you.

CF:  That’s what it is.  And I won’t hear from them for 8 years.  So, that’s where we met, in the tropics, we were 6 months in the tropics.

CR:  Was it love at first sight?

CF:  Yes it was.

CR:  Really?

CF:  Absolutely.

CR:  So what you’re saying is, you’re going to stay with her??

CF:  It does look that way.

CR:  I wish you lots of luck.

CF:  Thanks.

CR:  You are fantastic in Bridget Jones’s Diary which is playing nationwide.  You all have to go see it, he’s so divine in it.

Transcription by Karen and Mari.

 And now back to the studio

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