Hugh Grant is angry he turned down a role that could win Colin Firth an Oscar


I am a fan of Hugh Grant. To be more specific, I am a fan of Hugh Grant’s work with Richard Curtis, and in About A Boy, and on the Bridget Jones movies, where I think Hugh is probably playing a version of himself. I think Hugh should just stick to those kinds of well-written romantic comedies, just because he’s very good when something is well-written and funny. He’s not very good when the writing is bad, or when it’s not a comedy. But, within narrow parameters, Hugh is pretty awesome. I own many of those DVDs, and I’ve listened to the commentaries on a few of them. Love, Actually is a favorite DVD commentary, just because it’s as funny as the movie. Hugh is sitting around with Richard Curtis and a few of the other cast members, and whenever Colin Firth comes on-screen, Hugh trash-talks him.

So I had always thought the Firth-Grant “feud” was just something silly and fun, a way to promote the Bridget Jones movies. But it might be real! Oh, happy day. The Telegraph reports that Hugh was offered the role of King George VI in the soon-to-be released film, The King’s Speech. When Hugh passed, they went to Colin Firth, and it now looks like Colin will be in strong contention for the Best Actor Oscar for his portrait of the stuttering, decent, humble king who led his nation during World War II. And Hugh is pissed!

Hugh Grant is believed to have turned down the role in The King’s Speech that may win an Oscar for his rival actor Colin Firth.

Colin Firth’s role in The King’s Speech may win him an Oscar, but it is unlikely to improve his antagonistic relationship with Hugh Grant.

Grant, 50, who played the rival of Firth, also 50, in the Bridget Jones films, is understood to have turned down the role of George VI, but now bitterly regrets his decision.

“Hugh is kicking himself,” claims an associate. “He realises that the king’s struggle to overcome his speech impediment would have been a wonderful part, particularly as viewers would have recalled Hugh’s stuttering in Four Weddings and a Funeral.”

The actor’s last film was the romantic “comedy” Did You Hear About the Morgans?

“Watching his performance, you realise that Grant has already given up on acting,” one critic remarked.

[From The Telegraph]

Is this interesting gossip? It is, it really is. But I don’t think it’s true. I just can’t see how Hugh would have been anyone’s first choice to play King George – he’s not that strong a dramatic actor, and beyond that, Colin Firth looks more like King George, and Colin’s career is in a much better place right now. I think this may be crap, but it’s still fun. Plus, from what I’ve read about Hugh, he turns down almost everything because he hates working so much. So it’s possible he got the script at some point and passed on it without realizing that he wasn’t really the first choice, maybe?

Here’s the trailer for The King’s Speech:




Photos courtesy of Bauer-Griffin.

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32 Responses to “Hugh Grant is angry he turned down a role that could win Colin Firth an Oscar”

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  1. carrie says:

    It’s the Roberts/Bullock/Blind side syndrome

  2. Dorothy#1 says:

    AWESOME! I love them both so much and that movie looks great!

  3. Obvious says:

    One could only hope this is true. I love Bridget Jones 1, and the second was ok but I love the man fight.

  4. S says:

    Hugh would have been horrible in that role. I don’t think he’d be any good at playing someone real, and not just a version of himself. Colin is a much better casting decision.

  5. Ally says:

    I can see him regretting it now that there’s Oscar buzz, but the movie probably wouldn’t be getting Oscar buzz if Grant were playing the lead. He’s known or caricatured for playing bumbling, insecure, sometimes stuttering characters already, so it would just seem like he was turning George into a Hugh Grant character. He was wise to turn it down (the Brits especially, would have ripped him to shreds), but it must still burn now.

  6. Girafe99 says:

    Hugh is not a bad dramatic actor looking back at his very early roles, I think he has suffered the typecast of the affable floppy hard romantic lead but I think Colin Firth is a better actor as a whole.

    You’re right Kaiser I think Hugh just is not that interested and does things in his own time.

  7. SammyHammy says:

    Just because it might be an oscar winning role for Firth doesn’t mean it would be for Grant. It’s the actor that makes the role; not the role that makes the actor.

  8. Miss A says:

    My intense nerdities tells me I need to see this movie NOW! Also, Hugh Grant? Oh, please. Not a chance.

  9. RobN says:

    Had Hugh played the role, most of the reviews would have been about how badly miscast the role was and not about how many Oscars it ought to win.

  10. Ron says:

    Usually the role ends up with the right actor. There is serendipity in casting.

  11. mln says:

    @ S did you see Impromptu? I love that movie but he has the worst accent and is laughably bad in it, the movie is saved by Judy Davis and the rest of the cast being so brilliant. I think Kaiser is right he should stick to the insensitive jerk roles he does it so well.

  12. Diane says:

    Oh well, get over it Hugh, there will be other stuttering roles in the future. Loved in Bridget Jones.

  13. heb says:

    Colin fits the role better though

  14. lrm says:

    wait, colin firth is 50!!!!! wow. he looks great-i’d have figured early 40′s, tops.

    LOVE hugh grant-even if he does phone it in these days…and hates being a actor. and plays himself, mostly.
    He’s still freakin’ hilarious.
    His comedic timing always cracks me up.
    It’s nice to have some things to rely on in life—who cares if his range is limited?
    As bad as ‘the morgans movie was’ [and it was-i couldnt even get thru it on a trans atlantic flight to europe], there were still a few gems delivered by Grant. He’s funny. I enjoy him in nearly everything he’s in, similar to Jude Law. And I’m not embarrassed by this. They know who they are and what their limitations are, as actors/people, and the bring that to the role. Works for me. Predictable is nice. Kinda like Johnny Depp being predictably eccentric.

  15. Original Gracie says:

    I hope Colin does the the Oscar. He is amazing.

  16. Hautie says:

    I had no idea that he is a little jealous of Mr. Darcy! Which actually cracks me up. Makes those fight scene’s in Bridgette Jones even better…

    Hugh was Mr. Farris in Sense and Sensibilities…. and it is one of my all time favorite films. He can do drama well but I think he may have gotten lazy and just prefers to do the comedy.

    And I hate my self for this one… but I liked that movie he did with Drew Barrymore too. (The one where he was the faded 80′s pop star.)Lyrics and Music? I am too lazy to look it up. But it was a funny little film.

  17. Kaiser says:

    Hautie – Sense & Sensibility is one of my favorites too – I think I was including that in the “really well-written comedy” category, because technically, that movie is very funny.

    Sigh… I love Emma Thompson.

  18. flutters says:

    You nailed that limited sphere within which Hugh Grant is very good Kaiser.

    I’m with you in that I doubt the gossip item is true.

  19. mslewis says:

    Colin Firth is a real ACTOR with the gift of becoming the character he plays. That is not the case with Grant. I seriously doubt the producers offered this role to Grant. He would have been awful in it and there would have been zero Oscar buzz. Colin Firth is getting Oscar buzz because he deserves Oscar buzz. It’s not the movie, it’s the actor.

    Hugh Grant deserves to not be taken seriously by film critics. He will never win or even be nominated for an Oscar or any other major film award. He doesn’t even try anymore; he just phones it in. I watched “Morgans” because of Sarah Jessica Parker and thought it would be cute. Instead, I got Horse Face and Mr. GiggleStutter. What a waste of time. Good thing I didn’t have to pay my hard earned money for this crapola!!

  20. Aqua says:

    @Hautie it was Music and Lyrics.I love both men but even if Hugh Grant did the lead role it doesn’t mean it would have been oscar worthy.Sometimes the second choice actor/actress is better suited for the role than the original actor/actress.

  21. LBees says:

    He really does hate working, but he takes the odd job when he needs money. God bless his tiny heart.

  22. Riley says:

    I love both of these guys. I loved Hugh Grant after he was with the trashtastic Divine Brown, I loved him after the trashtastic Divine Brown asked him to come to her wedding, and I love him in spite of some really shitty movies (music and lyrics, notting hill, the man who climb up the hill but came down a mountain). I forgive him for his 13 year relationship with Elizabeth Hurley (she just seems to be intellectually inferior to him). It was just something about him in 4 weddings and a funeral that is so damned perfect that nothing he does can destroy his image in my eyes, except maybe, be jealous of Colin Firth, who is also quite perfect but for different reasons. I thought these two were really close friends, and I am kind of sad to read that perhaps they are not.

  23. Mairead says:

    I’m fairly meh on Hugh, he only really seems to be more likeable versions of himself or Byronic types in his youth.

    But anyway – I am seriously looking forward to this film. The casting of the therapist is inspired! Geoffry Rush would just scare the friggin’ stammer out of him :D

  24. Mizz Tickles says:

    I think Jennifer Aniston and Hugh Grant would make a great couple and should do a rom com together.

  25. Crash2GO2 says:

    Julia is the one who screwed up Notting Hill, not Hugh Grant. The rest of the movie was great – one of my all time favorites. Even Julia had her moments of decent acting in that one, but I thought it was a perfect vehicle for Hugh.

  26. Catherine says:

    Colin is a much better serious actor than Hugh where I think Hugh is better suited for the romantic comedies, more so than Colin. If he is pissed over this, then Hugh should rethink his acting skill because being in a movie such as this would surely bring the film down.

  27. Shay says:

    Hugh is illogical if he thinks that a role determines an Oscar based on its status as a role (excluding acting ability and delivery of character).
    Hugh is mediocre anyway. He is a uni-dimensional persona in acting. He is always the Brit romcom clown.

  28. Stephanie says:

    I love how the story puts ‘comedy’ in quotation marks. ;)

  29. sauvage says:

    Don’t forget Hugh Grant in “An Awfully Big Adventure”. He was absolutely great in it.

  30. dvdgal says:

    Just by watching the trailer, I wish it was Hugh Grant who accepted the role. I like Colin Firth as well. But I believe Hugh could bring some comic light to this film, which Colin might not able to deliver (I haven’t seen this movie yet. I’m only writing this based on both actors’ previous work). I wouldn’t be surprised Hugh was the first choice. Usually the main characters in any films are tend to be dull. It is very important that the main character can bring the likable elements to the screen; otherwise, the whole movie will be stolen by the supporting casts easily. Hugh can deliver very subtle comedic facial movements that are likable and funny at the same time(he is the master of it), which Colin can’t. Remember in Sense and Sensibility, when Marianne forces Edward to read the poem. Edward’s facial expressions were very funny. With a script that touches dark subject like WWII, you really need some comedic moments for the first half of the film. And for the second half, I presume the King will deliver a great speech. Again, remember Hugh from Love Actually, he delivered an authoritative speech. Grant can do that quite easily since he’s already had the accent. It is true that Grant may not be a series actor type to many people, but he definitely has the gifts to bring the likable elements out of unlikeable characters, like About a Boy and Bridget Jones’s Diary. I can’t help but notice that the Queen and the speech coach are already more charismatic and interesting than the King in the trailer. I’m afraid this is not a good sign. The bottom line is, when drama requires bit of comedy, it’s not the strongest genre of Firth.

  31. Tess says:

    Hugh Grant lacks the acting chops to win an Oscar or any other award. He’s an aging pretty boy who is fairly likable, but not overly talented.

  32. sara says:

    Has nobody seen maurice? Hugh is really good in it and he is also amazing in sirenes, about a boy and music and lyrics! Maybe Firth is more suitable as a king but i don’t think it is fair to say hugh grant is a bad actor!