Bridget Jones creator Helen Fielding has finally set the record straight – Mark Darcy is not based on Sir Keir Starmer.
There have long been rumours that Colin Firth’s reserved lawyer character was inspired by the barrister turned Labour leader.
But the best-selling writer has now rubbished the suggestion of a link between Sir Keir and Bridget Jones’s love interest.
“I had several different boyfriends, all very gorgeous,” she told Desert Island Discs.
“It’s amazing the number of people that lay claim to be Daniel (Hugh Grant’s character) or Mark, including Keir Starmer.”
Sir Keir has not claimed to be Mr Darcy, saying no-one knows the truth except the writer herself.
In January, he told ITV: “Everybody asks me this question when they should be asking her (Fielding) because she knows the answer and I don’t.
“It’s a rumour that’s been doing the rounds for years, but I honestly don’t know the answer…
“Of course I would (be flattered). But I honestly don’t know.”
Fielding told the BBC Radio 4 show that she penned singleton character Bridget when “the image of a single girl in her 30s had not caught up with the reality of it”.
She said: “I would go and see my parents and somebody would say, ‘How’s your love life? When are we going to get you married off?’
“It was hard. It still is hard for girls in their 30s.”
And she added: “I always denied she had anything to do with me. But of course she was very close to me in some ways but not in others.
“I was a single girl in London and having lots of fun.”
Desert Island Discs is on BBC Radio 4 on Sunday at 11am as well as BBC Sounds.