Marking 25 years since Helen Fielding’s creation first appeared in a newspaper column, the stars of the films and many more line up to offer real insight
It’s 25 years since Bridget Jones made her first appearance in a column in the Independent. Helen Fielding did not know then that her creation would become one of the most famous comic characters in modern literature. The warm, festive documentary Being Bridget Jones (BBC Two) examines the phenomenon in print and on film, with a truly varied cast of talking heads, from Hugh Grant to Andrew Marr to Germaine Greer, on hand to explain their role in its success, their interpretation of Bridget’s rise to fame or, in some cases, to show off the fact that they inspired some of the supporting characters.
I love all three Bridget Jones films and this does a brilliant job of digging deep into her world. The timing is perfect. Though people rarely think of Bridget Jones’s Diary as a Christmas film, it is a Christmas film. Darcy’s reindeer jumper reignited the trend for Christmas jumpers before they went mainstream. Ding dong, as Bridget would say. Here, Renée Zellweger opens proceedings by reading from the first book, in that familiar Bridget voice, and it sets a comforting tone from the beginning.