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Boris Johnson accused of stealing Labour candidate’s Love Actually parody in new campaign video

Rosena Allin-Khan tweeted her own clip inspired by romantic comedy weeks ago

Chiara Giordano
Tuesday 10 December 2019 11:27 GMT
Boris Johnson accused of 'stealing' Labour MP's Love Actually parody in new campaign video

Boris Johnson has been accused of stealing a Labour MP’s Love Actually parody in his new election campaign video.

The prime minister posted a clip of himself acting out a famous scene from the 2003 festive romantic drama, in which he appears on an apathetic voter’s doorstep armed with a stack of placards and a stereo playing Silent Night.

However within half an hour of posting his campaign video on Twitter on Monday night, Rosena Allin-Khan, Labour’s candidate for Tooting, in London, claimed Mr Johnson had copied her spoof.

Tweeting her own version, “Election Actually”, which she originally shared on 22 November, Dr Allin-Khan said: “I won’t be retweeting it – but Boris Johnson has copied my #ElectionActually video.

“Tanks. On. The. Lawn. Don’t share his version in outrage – instead, share my original version.

“It’s us versus Cummings, Johnson, Trump and Farage – retweet this and spread the word!”

In his three-minute “Vote Conservative Actually” video, Mr Johnson silently shows a woman a series of Brexit-themed messages after pretending to be a group of carol singers.

Recreating a scene originally featuring actors Keira Knightley and Andrew Lincoln, the prime minister holds up placards which read: “With any luck, by next year we’ll have Brexit done (if Parliament doesn’t block it again).”

Other placards said: “Your vote has never been more important, the other guy could win, so you have a choice to make between a working majority or another gridlocked hung parliament.”

Rosena Allin-Khan, Labour’s candidate for Tooting, in her Love Actually-inspired election campaign video. (Rosena Allin-Khan/Twitter)
Boris Johnson has been accused of copying a Labour candidate's Love Actually-inspired election campaign video. (Boris Johnson/Twitter)

At the end of the spoof clip, Mr Johnson says “Enough, let’s get this done,” referencing the original clip once more while walking away from the woman’s house.

Actor Hugh Grant, who supports tactical voting to prevent a Conservative majority and has been campaigning with the Liberal Democrats in London, pointed out that Mr Johnson’s video was missing a placard.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I thought it was quite well done, very high production values.

“But I did notice that one of the cards from the original film that he didn’t hold up was the one where Andrew Lincoln held up a card saying ‘because of Christmas you tell the truth’ and I just wonder if the spin doctors in the Tory party thought that was a card that wouldn’t look too great in Boris Johnson’s hands.”

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn also posted his own campaign video on Monday.

In a video entitled “Mean Tweets with Jeremy Corbyn”, the Labour leader sits beside a fireplace as he reads out critical tweets about him in a format popularised by US late-night chat host Jimmy Kimmel.

He says: “What is a commie hat? I wear a cap! It’s a bit like when I was told I was riding a Maoist bicycle. It’s a bicycle!”

After addressing Labour manifesto promises on broadband and tuition fees, he reads out a tweet about being found sexy.

“Oh this is bad,” he says, later telling viewers there was a magic money tree “in the Cayman Islands”.

The Labour leader ends the video with a high five to someone off-camera and saying he will be the next prime minister.

The Independent has contacted Dr Allin-Khan and the Conservative Party for comment.

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