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Diane Sawyer's Love Actually 20th anniversary interview got interrupted by the police

Diane Sawyer's interview with actor Love Actually Thomas Brodie-Sangster ended abruptly due to police saying they didn't have the correct permit

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Diane Sawyer and Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Diane Sawyer and Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Screenshot: ABC News/Youtube

20 years later, Love Actually’s Thomas Brodie-Sangster got to take a walk down memory lane with Diane Sawyer for ABC News’ 20th-anniversary special—so much so that he accidentally got to re-enact his character’s escape from police officers.

The incident took place as Brodie-Sangster discussed his experience filming the holiday film, in which he played Sam—a lovelorn kid who takes up drumming to win the affections of his school peer. Sitting beside Sawyer on the same bench that he filmed a scene on from the movie, The Queen’s Gambit star reminisced about working with his on-screen step-dad Liam Neeson.

“Liam was amazing. He treated me like his son,” said Brodie-Sangster. “He was absolutely lovely to me. He created this environment where I was very comfortable.”

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Unfortunately, the journey through holiday movies past came to an immediate stop for Sawyer and Brodie-Sangster as a producer pops up in the middle of the interview warning them of uh, an incoming issue.

“We have to stop,” says the off-screen producer to the two. “The police say we don’t have the proper permit, and they’re going to arrest us.”

How real experiences with love influenced certain ‘Love Actually’ storylines: Part 3

In true journalistic fashion, Sawyer reacts to the unexpected change with quick thinking and quick feet. “Oh, they are? Now we run,” exclaims Sawyer gleefully, before fleeing with Brodie-Sangster and her crew away from the police-protected bench along the Thames River.

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Although her interview with Brodie-Sanger was ended unceremoniously, Sawyer takes to her broadcast journalism roots and attempts to salvage the disaster in her own way—by enjoying a messy-looking panini on the street with the former child actor.

How a major news station like ABC News failed to get the right permits for filming in a public area is a mystery, but we thank them for this hilarious interlude that would fit perfectly into its own rom-com holiday romp.