Love Actually’s Thomas Brodie-Sangster Recalls 19 Years as ‘The Love Actually Kid’

It has been almost two decades since Love Actually hit cinemas, and star Thomas Brodie-Sangster has seen his career grow from his appearance as young Sam in the holiday classic. After being known as “The Love Actually kid” for many years, Brodie-Sangster returned to his role in 2017 for a Red Nose Day special, which reunited many of the original cast members for a special “sequel” to the film and caught up with some of the much-loved characters. Brodie-Sangster recently spoke to The Guardian about still being associated with the movie after so many years.

Despite being part of a huge ensemble cast of established faces such as Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Keira Knightley, Andrew Lincoln, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Liam Neeson, and of course, Alan Rickman, 13-year-old Brodie-Sangster played an iconic role as Sam, a young boy who endeared himself to audiences through his close relationship with his father (Neeson) and his unspoken crush on a girl.


Over the years, Brodie-Sangster has appeared in many other roles, including in series such as The Queen’s Gambit and Game of Thrones, as well as the role of Newt in The Maze Runner trilogy. Yet, no matter how many roles he plays, there are plenty of people who still know him as “the Love Actually kid,” and that is something he has learned to accept. He told The Guardian:

“If I got annoyed about it every time, I’d spend a lot of my life that way, it’s something I’m really proud of. It’s cool to be in a film that’s somehow still gaining momentum. It did quite well but it wasn’t a huge blockbuster. But over the years it’s gained that cult following.”

Thomas Brodie-Sangster Has a Bright Future

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For every child actor, there is a big leap needed to break away from the role that everyone recognizes, which shows them as a doe-eyed child, with a cute factor of 100 and everything to prove as an actor. After starring in Love Actually, Brodie-Sangster then appeared in Nanny McPhee, another role that required him to be a child with a face that expressed more than his scripted words, so it took a while for him to get out of that shadow and move into a more adult world, something that isn’t easy when you still have a very young face.

The actor’s most well-known work since Love Actually was in The Queen’s Gambit as Benny Watts, a role that saw him nominated for an Emmy Award, which he didn’t win but put him on the right track for the future. Having appeared in award-winning shows like Game of Thrones, it is undoubtedly only a matter of time before the star is finally given the kind of recognition he deserves. His next role is in the Danny Boyle directed miniseries Pistol on FX, in which he plays Malcolm McLaren, the manager of the Sex Pistols. The six-part series makes its premiere on FX on Hulu on May 31