British actor Colin Firth has become an Italian citizen, the country's authorities have confirmed. "And we still can not believe it", he told an Austrian newspaper four months after the last year's Brexit vote.
Firth has been quoted as calling Brexit a disaster. He would not confirm that it had anything to do with Brexit.
The Pride and Prejudice actor has been married since 1997. "Like nearly everybody I have a passionate love of Italy and joining my wife and kids in being dual citizens will be a huge privilege". But from now on Firth is officially as Italian as spaghetti carbonara.
His wife - film producer Livia Giuggioli - is Italian, making the Oscar-winning Bridget Jones star eligible for citizenship there.
The Italian interior ministry, which confirmed Firth had been granted a passport, said: "The very famous actor, who won an Oscar for the film The King's Speech, is married to a citizen from our country and has often declared his love for our land". The couple live in Chiswick, London, with their two sons Luca, 16, and Matteo, 13.
In a statement Saturday, the 57-year-old Firth said he and his wife had never thought much about their different passports, "but now, with some of the uncertainty around, we thought it sensible that we should all get the same".
Firth and Giuggioli, 47, also have a house near the town of Città della Pieve in Umbria and the actor speaks good Italian. The actor, who has also appeared in the hit films The English Patient, Bridget Jones' Diary, Love, Actually and Shakespeare in Love, is now promoting his new film Kingsman: The Golden Circle, a sequel to the ironic, action-packed 2015 hit.
Citizenship requests from the eight eastern European countries who joined the EU in 2004 were higher than those of the EU 14 countries before the Brexit vote, but have now been overtaken by applications from the bloc's original member states.