The Accidental Husband

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The Accidental Husband
Accidental husband.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Griffin Dunne
Produced by Jennifer Todd
Suzanne Todd
Jason Blum
Written by Mimi Hare
Clare Naylor
Bonnie Sikowitz
Starring Uma Thurman
Jeffrey Dean Morgan
Colin Firth
Isabella Rossellini
Sam Shepard
Music by Andrea Guerra
Cinematography William Rexer II
Edited by Suzy Elmiger
Distributed by Yari Film Group
Release date(s) February 29, 2008 (UK)
November 10, 2009 (US DVD)
Running time 90 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $22,707,064[1]

The Accidental Husband is a 2008 American romantic comedy film directed by Griffin Dunne, and starring Uma Thurman, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Colin Firth, Isabella Rossellini, and Sam Shepard. The film was written by Mimi Hare, Clare Naylor and Bonnie Sikowitz, and is produced by Jennifer Todd, Jason Blum, and Uma Thurman. It was initially released in the UK in 2008, but was released direct-to-DVD in the United States.


New York firefighter Patrick Sullivan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) had no idea his seemingly idyllic life was about to go up in smoke — especially as the unwitting, second-hand recipient of advice from famed love expert and radio host Dr. Emma Lloyd (Uma Thurman). One day he is a happy-go-lucky guy looking forward to a life with his soon-to-be-bride. Then, his fiancée, Sophia (Justina Machado), is seeking couples counseling on the radio from Dr. Lloyd. Lloyd questions Sophia’s concept of romantic love and advises her to break their engagement, which she swiftly does.

Patrick is so upset that when he hears that Emma is about to be married herself, he allows his young neighbour, an Indian computer whiz-kid to hack into public records and create a fake marriage between himself and Emma, because he wants to force a confrontation. Emma is told she cannot marry her perfect-gentleman fiancé, Richard (Colin Firth), because she is already married. She has no choice but to confront Patrick, who after stringing her along with lie upon lie, finds out that he is attracted to her, and makes a play for her romantically. He proceeds to inject himself into her life, causes her to have to lie herself, to her beloved fiancé. Emma is drawn to his immense charisma but tries to ignore it.

Emma needs Patrick’s help desperately because he has to sign the annulment papers so that she can marry Richard. Patrick delays this process long enough so that he can get enough time to spend with Emma. At one point, Patrick acts as her fiancé Richard and Emma doesn’t deny the pretence because of some people watching them while tasting a wedding cake. Unknown to Emma, one of the ladies there happens to be the wife of a man Richard is doing business with. This particular man decides to stop his deals with Richard and is planning to tell him in so during a banquet where both Richard and Emma are attending. This lady (after finding out her husband’s plans) meets Emma during the banquet and tells her of the same. Emma wants to save Richard’s business, but she is in a dilemma because the lady believes Patrick to be Richard. It so happens that Patrick arrives there at the banquet. Not knowing what else to do, Emma continues to pretend that Patrick is her fiancé Richard and that Richard is her brother Carl. Matters get worse when Patrick and Emma are invited to dinner with Richard’s business partner and his wife. But the funny side is that Patrick charms the businessman so much that he decides to change his decision and continue business with "Richard".

Later, Emma and Patrick go to dinner with the businessman. Patrick then takes them on a surprise visit to a special event. Patrick stays with an Indian family and is quite close to them. They support and encourage him through his difficult times. It is to a Hindu "sacred thread ceremony" (Upanayana) rite-of-passage ritual, that Patrick takes Emma and the businessman’s family. The computer whiz-kid is the one getting initiated. Emma and the other guests have a really good time there, and it is there that she sees a whole new side of Patrick, who had been repulsive to her so far. There is a slight spark of attraction, but Emma flees the scene before anything else can happen.

Patrick continues to pursue her later, and even comes to visit her in her radio studio. There they have a confrontation and then board a lift, continuing their argument. Suddenly Patrick asks the other occupants of the lift to leave and they do so after seeing his fireman’s badge. He then locks the lift and then proceeds to kiss Emma. They have quite a passionate time, not knowing that they are being viewed by the security staff on the camera at the top of the lift. Soon Emma can not deny her attraction to Patrick anymore and decides to call off her wedding. She goes to Patrick’s lodgings and they make love that night. It is only the next morning that she finds out that Patrick had been keeping tabs on her and stalking her. Patrick then confesses that he had initially wanted to teach her a lesson about love but then fell for her. She is so hurt that he had been using her. She then goes back to the honourable Richard, who still loves her and says that she wants to marry him. Richard tells Patrick to leave Emma alone. Patrick also decides to let Emma go because by this point, he feels he will always have to question her resolve and honesty.

But both Patrick and Emma are miserable with their separate lives. One day before her wedding, Patrick calls her at the radio station and tells her that he loves her. She does not answer him. She confides in her father and asks his advice. He tells her that the decision is hers. At the next day, Emma and her guests arrive early to the church and are getting ready for the wedding. There, Richard tells her that he wants her to be happy and decides to let her marry the man she has fallen in love with. Richard had also heard the radio show the night before and recognized Patrick telling Emma of his love for her. Richard then walks away while Emma activates the sprinkler system with a burning paper. The sprinklers drench the guests who then leave the church to dry. During this time, Emma’s father calls the fire department where Patrick works and asks them to come to the church. When Patrick arrives there, they get married, and live happily ever after. The final scene shifts to a year later where it is shown that Emma is pregnant, and that she and Patrick are still very much in love. The movie ends with a Tamil song "Swasame" from the movie Thenali in the background.[2]



It was released on February 29, 2008 in the UK and was scheduled to be released on August 22, 2008 in the United States[3] delayed to March 27, 2009 before being shelved indefinitely following the bankruptcy of its distributor, Yari Film Group's releasing division.[4] It was released direct-to-DVD in the United States on November 10, 2009. The film features several Indian songs, including A. R. Rahman's "Yaro Yarodi", "Swasamae" and "Rang De" (from the films Alaipayuthey, Thenali and Thakshak respectively) as well as Punjabi Hit Squad's "Kuriyeh".

Box office performance[edit]

As of March 29, 2009, it made $20,745,939.[5] It is being considered for an Indian remake.[citation needed]


External links[edit]