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The 27 Most Memorable On-Screen Proposals We've Ever Seen

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maddy sims the knot associate editor
by Maddy Sims
maddy sims the knot associate editor
Maddy Sims
Associate Editor
  • Maddy writes for The Knot, with a specialty in beauty, sustainability, mental health and inclusivity.
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Maddy wrote for several different publications, including Insider, Bustle, Real Simple and Apartment Therapy.
  • Maddy has a Bachelor's degree in magazine journalism and a Master's degree in health, science and environmental reporting (both of which are from Northwestern's Medill School ...
Updated Dec 11, 2020

Sweater weather and proposal season are upon us. As heartwarming engagement announcements trickle through your news feed, we have just what you need. We rounded up the best movie proposals as well as the best TV shows proposals of all time. From dramatic to sweet to silly, we've included the most memorable engagements that graced the big screen. On-screen engagements and weddings don't just spread happiness—they also spread inspiration. According to an internal study by The Knot, 20% of all couples surveyed said TV characters/personalities have set a positive example of marriage for them.

Despite the influence on-screen couples have on real-life couples, it's worth noting not all proposals happen like the movies. Someone might propose with a watch rather than a ring. Other couples might each buy a ring for each other. More commonly, proposals are less of a surprise, as couples are taking it upon themselves to proactively talk about the future. Your proposal should be authentic to your love story. If that means you both ask, you present your partner with a non-jewelry item or you surprise them at dinner, so be it. Remember to make it personalized to your relationship, and you won't go wrong. To help spark inspiration, cozy up on the couch with your partner to watch the best movie proposals and the best TV show proposals ever.

The Best Movie Proposals of All Time

We chose these sweet big-screen engagements because they're so unique and charming. See are the best movie proposals of all time, below.

Katherine and Jim, Hidden Figures

For his proposal, Jim surprises Katherine with a fully cooked dinner with her daughters and her mother. She's so taken aback, she asks if it's her birthday and she's forgotten about it. But her daughters assure her that's not the occasion they're celebrating. In front of her family, Jim gets down on one knee and presents Katherine with his mother's ring. He says they were married for over 50 years, so it's about as lucky as a ring can get. As he asks her to marry him, he admits that he called his mom the night after he and Katherine met—he was that sure he was going to marry her. Her mother said, "she must be something," to which Jim responses, "No, she's more than something." They get engaged and celebrate all together with dinner.

Aurelia and Jamie, Love Actually

After breaking up with his girlfriend, Jamie heads to France to focus on finishing his novel. Aurelia is hired to work as his housekeeper during Jamie's stay. Despite not being able to understand each other, they grow extremely fond of each other. At the end of Jamie's stay in France, he and Aurlia share a kiss—both believing they'll likely never see each other again. However, Jamie quickly realizes he loves Aurelia, so he learns Portugese, flies to her home and asks her to marry him in front of her entire family. She responds "yes" in English, as she learned the language "just in cases."

Nick and Rachel, Crazy Rich Asians

After Nick finally introduces Rachel to his family, it's clear they all disapprove of her. Given her background and family history, they don't believe she's a suitable match for Nick. The tension between Rachel and Nick's family ultimately causes her to break up with Nick. To prove how much he loves Rachel, he goes to his mother to get her approval. He chases Rachel and her mother down on a plane just before they take off and proposes. He reveals that he had a plan to fly her out to his favorite island and propose at sunset. Instead, he ends up proposing to Rachel on the plane. He gets down on one knee and presents her with his mother's ring—a sign she's given her approval of the relationship.

Kristen and Jeremy, Think Like a Man

After separating, Jeremy comes back to Kristen and gives her the most romantic proposal ever. He tells her that she's the last person he thinks about before he goes to sleep at night. He's so nervous that while he's down on one knee, he says, "I want to be your wife, and I want to be your husband." Then he quickly corrects himself saying, "I want to be your husband, and I want you to be my wife." In our opinion, the labels don't matter, but we love how heartfelt this moment is.

Toula and Ian, My Big Fat Greek Wedding

Toula and Ian cross paths twice before they begin dating. However, her family only wants her to marry someone Greek, so they have to keep their relationship secret. The parents find out eventually, and forbid them from dating (which doesn't end up working). They continue to see each other and spend time at Ian's apartment. We love Ian's proposal in this because it's simple and sweet. The couple is snuggling in bed together, and Ian asks her to marry him right there and then. He presents her with a ring and they happily celebrate.

Maggie and Ike, Runaway Bride

Anyone can to propose to their partner—regardless of their gender identity. Maggie proves this in Runaway Bride, when she gets down on her knee and asks Ike to marry her. Her proposal speech might take the cake as our favorite. As she's proposing, she says, "I guarantee that we'll have tough times. And I guarantee that at some point, one or both of us will want to get out. But I also guarantee that if I don't ask you to be mine, I'll regret it for the rest of my life, Cause I know, in my heart, you're the only one for me."

Big and Carrie, Sex and the City

Proposals don't have to involve rings either. In Sex and the City, Big proposes to Carrie by presenting her with a stunning blue stiletto. Set inside a walk-in closet, the pair vows to love each other forever. *Swoon*

Jamie and Landon, A Walk to Remember

As Landon and Jamie spend more time together, Jamie reveals one of her life's wishes: to get married in the same church as her late grandmother. In order to fulfill her wish before she gets too sick, Landon proposes to her while they're stargazing one night. After they sit down, he takes her hand and asks if she'll marry him. No rings or shoes exchanged—just a sweet, simple question.

Margaret and Andrew, The Proposal

Talk about an unconventional romance. In the beginning of The Proposal, Andrew dislikes Margaret because she's a controlling boss. However, upon learning she's going to be deported back to Canada, she blackmails Andrew into marrying her so she can stay in her job. The couple then visits Andrew's family to announce their engagement. But during their stay in Alaska, they grow extremely fond of each other. Margaret feels so guilty about the situation, she leaves Andrew at the altar. Only then does Andrew realize he actually loves her, so he chases her back to her office in New York City. He realizes the only way they can be together is if he proposes, since she's going to be deported in a few hours. He looks directly at her and says, "Marry me. Because I'd like to date you."

Melanie and Andrew, Sweet Home Alabama

In the beginning of this popular romantic comedy, Melanie is in a serious relationship with her boyfriend, Andrew, in New York. The night of the proposal, Andrew surprises Melanie by bringing her to the Tiffany & Co. flagship store in NYC. All the lights turn on at once, and she's surrounded by sparkling jewelry. Andrew turns to her and says, "Pick one."

Fletcher and Emma, Bride Wars

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Our favorite kinds of proposals are the ones that are deeply personalized to the couple's love story. One example of that is Fletcher and Emma from Bride Wars. The couple orders takeout and watches a movie on the couch, but this time Fletcher includes a surprise. He ensures Emma opens a particular fortune cookie, and inside there's a stunning ring. "If we're 99 years old and doing exactly this, that'll be good enough for me," he explains to Emma.

June and Johnny, Walk the Line

After a failed attempt to propose on the tour bus, Johnny tries again—this time in a more public setting. During a set together, Johnny stops the song to propose to June in front of the audience. He insists he can't finish the song until she gives him an answer.

Harry and Sally, When Harry Met Sally

This classic romantic comedy is not only known for its iconic New York City scenery, but also for Harry's swoon-worthy line: "When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible." Props to Harry for the ultra-romantic proposal.

The Best TV Show Proposals Ever

You've likely seen many engagements unfold on television, but we picked these because they're all so unique and lovely. Below are the best TV show proposals of all time.

David and Patrick, Schitt's Creek

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After becoming business partners, David and Patrick grow close—so close that they end up becoming romantic partners as well. Despite the obstacles they face during their relationship, Patrick eventually surprises David at the top of a mountain with a set of proposal rings (to match his existing jewelry). David is so surprised he asks Patrick if he's sure, to which Patrick replies: "Easiest decision of my life."

Cece and Schmidt, New Girl

After being on and off for several seasons, Cece and Schidmt both realize they want to be with each other. Cece, who is off hiking a mountain to get over Schmidt, hurries back when her friends tell her Schmidt wants to be with her. Meanwhile, Schmidt is hurrying out of the loft to track Cece down and tell her how he feels. They both meet at the front door of the loft, where Schmidt reveals the five-dollar bill he had to donate to his "jar" after telling Cece he was going to marry her the first day they met. He gets down on his knees and repeats the statement he said to her all those years ago: "Girl, will you marry me?"

Bailey and Ben, Grey's Anatomy

Nothing demonstrates choosing to love someone despite their stubbornness more than this proposal scene. While in the operating room, the couple gets into a fight because Bailey missed their lunchtime crossword tradition. To prove her point, she starts doing the crossword during the operation. Little does she know Ben made the crossword and one of the questions is: "Will you marry me?"

Monica and Chandler, Friends

Any go-getter can appreciate Monica's sweet, candlelit proposal attempt. Lucky for her, Chandler, was there to finish the act when Monica couldn't complete her sentence. "You make me happier than I ever thought I could be and if you let me, I will spend the rest of my life trying to make you feel the same way," he tells her.

Brittany and Santana, Glee

It's only fitting that Santna asks Brittany to marry her in the Glee classroom. After all, it's where Santana came to terms with her feelings for Brittany in the first place. After performing a "mash-up" of "Hand in My Pocket" and "Feel the Earth Move," Santana tells Brittany that she wants to "mash up with [her] for life." Then, she presents the ring, gets down on her knee and asks Brittany to marry her.

Randall and Beth, This Is Us

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Despite Beth's hesitation to get married, Randall proposes to her several times. He asks her to marry him at a variety of locations, including on a Jumbotron at a baseball game. She declines each time, insisting she's not married. However, after several attempts, she finally gives in once he buys her her favorite meal of nachos and ginger beer.

Rachel and Mike, Suits

Mike completely surprises Rachel by taking her by the hands and listing all the reasons he loves her. In the middle of his speech, she realizes what's about to happen. He tells her that he went to get his grandmother's ring cleaned, and then gets down on one knee. He explains that he didn't want to 40 years and wonder why he didn't ask her one day sooner. He romantically asks her to marry him, and she tearfully says yes.

Charlotte and Harry, Sex and the City

When exes Charlotte and Harry found themselves at the same singles mixer, it only took a few seconds for them to realize they were meant to be together, diamond ring and all. Charlotte's hopeless romantic mentality made her engagement to Harry that much sweeter.

Mitch and Cam, Modern Family

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Modern Family captures an important moment in history: The legalization of gay marriage in the statr of California. The show incorporates this landmark decision into the script, by showing Mitch and Cam's proposal to each other. While each of them work to find the perfect way to propose to the other, their plans are ultimately (and hilariously) derailed. However, as they drive back from a restaurant, they get a flat tire. They both kneel down to look at the tire, look at each other, smile and say "yes."

Kurt and Blaine, Glee

What else would you expect from a Glee proposal? Blaine surprises Kurt with all of his McKinley High friends, Dalton friends and other show choir competitors. All the while, there's dancing, flying rose petals and a lovely rendition of "All You Need Is Love." When the performance is over, Blaine tells Kurt that his soul, "knew that [their] hands were meant to hold each other fearlessly and forever." Can someone pass the tissues, please?

Jim and Pam, The Office

Marriage is all about meeting each other halfway, and nobody demonstrates that more than Jim and Pam in The Office. When Jim insists that she meet him halfway between New York City and Scranton, Pennsylvania, at a gas station in the pouring rain, she's not too happy. "Hey! This is not halfway!" she yells. "I did the math. I had to drive way longer than you." Smiling, he gets down on one knee and asks her to marry him.

Toby and Kate, This Is Us

Kate insists that she's fine with a low-key courthouse wedding, but Toby doesn't buy it. Later in the episode, he ahs a heartfelt conversation with a picture of Kate's wedding, saying that he knows Kate wants a big, beautiful wedding. He later surprises Kate by proposing to her with $200 worth of zip-up hoodies, telling Kate that he knows this is what her dad would have wanted.

Leslie and Ben, Parks and Recreation

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You better have your tissues handy, because Ben's sweet proposal to Leslie strikes every chord when she stops him mid-proposal. "Wait, wait," she interjects. "I just need to remember every little thing about how perfect my life is, right now, at this exact moment." In just a few seconds of silence, we see pure happiness, and it reminds us why Leslie and Ben are the the perfect example of #RelationshipGoals.

Jane and Michael, Jane the Virgin

Jane and Michael are happily dating—until she gets accidentally inseminated with someone else's baby. The unexpected pregnancy takes a toll on her and Michael's relationship, but that doesn't stop Jane from chasing what she wants. She dresses up in a gorgeous yellow dress and proposes to Michael at the police station (his place of work). In front of all of his friends, he happily says yes.

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