Love Actually’s Martine McCutcheon Is Iconic in the UK for More Than Just Natalie
From having one of TV’s most bonkers fictional deaths to the time she was in possibly the weirdest wedding photo of all time, Martine McCutcheon is a British icon
It’s the most wonderful time of the year – not least because it’s the time of year where people the world over get to enjoy Martine McCutcheon’s star turn in the ultimate Christmas movie Love Actually. Her portrayal of Natalie – the sweary, lovable assistant to Prime Minister David (aka Hugh Grant) – is one of the film’s highlights, and she’s rightly beloved for the role. She’s recently been reminiscing about Love Actually at the ‘20 Years Later’ reunion on ABC:
Outrageously, this is one of the few times her work has become well-known internationally, but here in the UK there’s way more to McCutcheon than Love Actually, so it’s about time we rectify this travesty.
The Tragic Death of Tiffany Mitchell
Her award-winning portrayal of Tiffany Mitchell in Eastenders made Martine McCutcheon one of the UK’s best-loved soapstars, and her tragic death in a 1998 New Year’s Eve special was watched by 12 million viewers.
Which is all the more impressive when you consider she somehow manages to die almost instantly after gently rolling over the bonnet of a car travelling approximately 2mph. We’ve frankly seen more perilous looking falls on bouncy castles, but still, the nation was utterly heartbroken, so much so that a book of her fictional soap life called Tiffany’s Secret Diary released at the time of her death became an instant bestseller.
Our beloved Tiffany was only killed off because Martine McCutcheon was embarking on a pop music career, and her debut single Perfect Moment was a legit tune, going in straight at number one. It’s even more remarkable when you consider the song she knocked off the top spot was Flat Beat, a dance song performed by a weird little yellow puppet called Flat Eric.
She went on to have four other Top Ten hits and has released four albums, and also won an Olivier Award for her West End performance as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady. Two words: triple threat.
Death By Wheel of Cheese
If you haven’t seen Martine McCutcheon’s character in Midsomer Murders get offed by a giant wheel of cheese, you simply haven’t lived. This is up there with this cosy crime drama’s most ridiculous deaths, and that’s saying something – other gruesome ends on Midsomer Murders have included being electrified by a roulette table, run over by a tank and being hit by bottles of wine flung from a catapult.
The Weirdest Wedding Photo Ever
Every time we remember Martine McCutcheon was Liza Minnelli’s bridesmaid when she married David Gest, our minds are blown anew. She apparently became friends with the couple after meeting them at a club, a chance encounter for which we will be forever grateful, as it led to this unbelievable wedding photo. Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, Liza Minnelli, David Gest… and Martine McCutcheon.
Other guests at this star-studded ceremony included Diana Ross, Joan Collins, Mia Farrow, Anthony Hopkins and David Hasselhoff, and – in a case of life imitating art – McCutcheon was apparently sat next to former President Donald Trump. Sadly, this time Hugh Grant wasn’t around to defeat him with a rousing speech about David Beckham’s left foot, but we’re sure Martine held her own.
Find out where to stream Love Actually this Christmas