When "Love Actually" was released in 2003, it was expected to be a quiet, British, Christmas movie that would hopefully find enough fans to cover its $45 million budget. As British films don't typically sell well to American audiences, no one was expecting much of an impact on this side of the ocean. What followed was unprecedented -- the movie grossed nearly $250 million at the box office and developed a cult following that has lasted all these many years later. Such a following that it would seem, its sequel has broken the internet.

Sequel filmed for BBC's Red Nose Day

Americans may be most familiar with "Red Nose Day" as the annual prime-time special that began airing on NBC in 2015. The specials here have raised more than $60 million for US-based charities. However, Red Nose Day actually began in the U.K. in 1985 as a partnership between BBC and the U.K. charity Comic Relief to raise funds for poverty initiatives throughout the UK and Africa.

In Britain, the biennial fundraiser is a full day long and takes up the airwaves across the public broadcaster, including several television channels and radio stations, creating a hugely celebrated event that has raised over $1.2 billion.

One of the first people attached to Red Nose Day, back in 1985, was a little-known scriptwriter named Richard Curtis. Curtis has since gone on to be write some of the biggest hits in the romantic-comedy movie genre, like "Bridget Jones's Diary," "Notting Hill," and of course, "Love Actually."

After the success of "Love Actually" in 2003, fans often asked Curtis to continue the stories of the movie's characters, but it was not something he had planned to do.

He told NME earlier this year, "I would never have dreamt of writing a sequel to Love Actually, but I thought it might be fun to do 10 minutes to see what everyone is now up to." He later added, "It’ll certainly be a nostalgic moment getting back together."

Trailer released, crashes BBC website

A 19-second trailer was released for the 10-minute short sequel overnight on the BBC's Red Nose Day website.

Generally speaking, there was great buzz created on social media. However, once the American fans and media woke up to the news of the trailer, the website seemed to go offline for several hours late this morning, leading to speculation that U.S. fans caused the site to crash after rushing to view the clip.

The BBC has yet to reply to messages regarding the server error, but did have the website, and trailer, back up and running by the early afternoon.

The "Love Actually" sequel will air in the U.K. on March 24th, then again in the U.S. on March 25th on NBC. Nearly all of the original stars of the original Film, including Andrew Lincoln ("The Walking Dead"), Chiwetel Ejiofor ("Twelve Years a Slave"), and Liam Neeson are expected to appear. Emma Thompson, whose character played opposite the late Alan Rickman, was not available to star in the film, likely due to promotion for the upcoming live-action "Beauty and the Beast" movie.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!
Click to read more