When picturing their wedding, for many people a fairytale nuptial comes to mind. A dream wedding, with much fun and laughter, like some memorable ones in the movies, whether it be Mamma Mia or My Big Fat Greek Wedding, is no less than what all couples deserve. In this blissful season of white gowns and fancy bouquets, let’s take a look at some of the most iconic wedding scenes in film history.
Right off the heels of Pretty Woman, Julia Roberts, Richard Gere and Garry Marshall managed to create another cult classic, with the romantic comedy, Runaway Bride. This time, however, Roberts played the commitment-phobe. Having abandoned three men at the altar, she becomes notoriously known as the “runaway bride.” Instead of marrying her latest love interest, she ends up falling in love with Gere, the newspaper columnist who has criticised and scathed her. Spoiler alert: this time she doesn’t runaway.
Romeo + Juliet
This modern version of the age-old story features Leonardo DiCaprio as Romeo and Claire Danes as Juliet. Although the music and costumes are slightly different than what Shakespeare intended, DiCaprio and Danes do fall deeply in love despite being from rival families only to submit to suicide. Being one of DiCaprio and Danes’ first critically acclaimed roles, the wedding scene holds significant sentimentality and has become iconic in the realm of Romeo & Juliet adaptations.
This romantic comedy is the cautionary tale of how the fairytale notion of wedded bliss can turn just about anyone into a bridezilla and can even turn two lifelong friends, Liv (Kate Hudson) and Emma (Anne Hathaway) against each other. After the two best friends schedule their weddings on the same day, they each make it their life’s mission to ruin the other’s big day. Although a lot of sabotage and heartbreak ensues, by the end of the film both brides kiss and make up demonstrating that best friends do last forever.
Regarded by many as one of the greatest films in cinematic history, The Godfather is an unforgettable American crime film. Although most of the film deals with such heavy subject matter as mass murders and political corruption, the famous opening scene is the blissful wedding of Connie Don Corleone, the Godfather’s daughter. In true Italian fashion, it was a lively, gaudy event where everyone was in high spirits. It is at this wedding where the audience gets its first glimpse into the lives of the Corleone family, a leading New York crime family. It is also where one of the most iconic utterances in cinematic history is first revealed, which goes a little something like this; “I’ll make him an offer he can’t refuse.”
Father of the Bride
Steve Martin as the overbearing but extremely lovable father of the bride makes for a most memorable character in film history. Throughout this iconic romantic comedy, Steve Martin plays George Banks the overprotective father who can’t seem to let go of the idea that his daughter Annie, played by Kimberly Williams, is still a child. Through a series of hilariously funny events, Martin finally is able to give her away and let go of his possessive persona, which culminates in the tearful wedding scene.
Mamma Mia! One of the most successful romantic comedies of all time features Meryl Streep as Donna Sheridan, a single mother of a soon to be bride. Not knowing who her father is, Donna’s daughter, Sophie, invites three of her mother’s previous suitors (one of whom she expects to be her father) to the Greek island to attend her wedding. Through a sequence of events, the audience goes on a musical journey of epic proportions where ABBA’s greatest hits are combined with Meryl Streep’s faultless performance. The culminating wedding scene, set against the backdrop of the scenic Greek islands is the cherry on top of this amazing combination of movie magic.
Coming to America
In this 1980s classic, Eddie Murphy plays the overindulged African prince who travels to America with the intention of finding a wife. During his time in America, he is disguised as a poor foreign student so as not to attract attention, and meets the girl of his dreams, Lisa, while working at her father’s fast food chain. After finally falling for him, Lisa finds out that Murphy has been dishonest about his identity. Disappointed, Murphy returns to Africa to proceed with the wedding ceremony his father has set up for him, but in true movie magic, Murphy exposes the woman under the veil only to find Lisa, his American love.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding
The highest grossing romantic comedy of all time, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, is a rom-com classic. Still single at 30 years old, Fotoula “Toula” Portokalos has a hard time finding a man to get married to until Ian Miller walks into her family’s restaurant and right into her life. As she begins to fall in love with him, he begins falling in love with her large and slightly eccentric Greek family. Although they face a lot of bumps down the road, Toula finally gets married to her prince charming at the end of the film, resulting in one of the most epic weddings on the silver screen.
Sex and the City 2
Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, was a TV icon in the 90s and early 2000s when she and each of her friends represented a different kind of independent, smart and fashionable woman in Sex and the City. Her wedding to Mr. Big in the feature film was a hotly anticipated event for women across the world, and even more so was the dress she would wear, which was Vivienne Westwood by the way. And even though Mr. Big left her at the altar, it is this iconic picture of her in that white dress surrounded by the gang that will forever be etched in our psyche.