Hugh Grant: ‘I got too old and fat and ugly to do romantic comedies’

Many years ago, Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore did a movie together called Music and Lyrics. They hated each other. They’re just too different, and it was evident for years afterwards. Hugh never really bad-mouthed her, but he made it perfectly clear that there was no love lost. So imagine my surprise that Hugh has been a guest on Drew’s talk show a few times and they get along really well now?? Like, you might even say that Hugh goes out of his way to be NICE to Drew, and he makes the effort to chat with her amiably. Which is difficult to do, because Drew is an extremely annoying person. Well, Hugh is currently promoting Wonka and instead of being fully miserable 24-7, Hugh has been playing along and enjoying himself. He did a segment with Drew where he talked about how his personal life is completely settled now but he has one last career goal.

Reflecting on his post-rom-com resurgence, which Barrymore, 48, dubbed the “Hugh-aissance,” the actor said, “I told you I got a bit better.”

“I got a little less bad after I had children, got married, got happier,” he continued. “I got too old and fat and ugly to do romantic comedies obviously, so I got off with more interesting things.”

Barrymore pushed back at this (“I don’t see you that way at all”) and suggested they reprise their on-screen chemistry as evidenced in 2007’s Music and Lyrics. “We need to do another one,” she said.

Elsewhere in the chat, Grant revealed that while he may be done with “sweet roles,” he still loves them.

“I love those films. I love the fact that people still like them, but I never felt comfortable really doing them,” he told Barrymore. “I don’t know about you, but I prefer more of a mask. I want to be someone else. Then it frees me up and then I quite like acting.”

When asked what in his life — both professionally and personally — he still wants to accomplish, Grant had a surprising answer for Barrymore.

“I’ve done my personal life,” the actor, who is married to Anna Eberstein, with whom he has three children. He also has two children with ex Tinglan Hong. “I’m very happily married, great girl, lovely children,” he said, adding that he is “done, finished, cooked.”

When it comes to his career, however, Grant has unfinished business. “Professionally, I want to finish that book. I wrote half a novel and I need to finish it,” he revealed. How, Barrymore asked, will Grant “find the time” to complete the novel? “Well, I won’t ever, and then I’ll die unsatisfied and miserable,” he joked.

[From People]

I hate to admit it, but Hugh Grant is a better actor now than he ever was when he was the rom-com king. He wasn’t a bad actor then, but he really has gotten more comfortable as he’s gotten older. Meaning, he’ll stretch his wings more, do weirder parts or play dirtbags and psychos. It really works on him – he was excellent in The Undoing, he was wonderful in that movie with Meryl (Florence Foster Jenkins) and he really is enjoying a Hughaissance.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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16 Responses to “Hugh Grant: ‘I got too old and fat and ugly to do romantic comedies’”

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  1. SueBarbri33 says:

    He was amazing in Bridget Jones, and even better in The Remains of the Day. But his best movie–and one of my favorites of all time–is About A Boy.

    • Kristin says:

      OMG! My favorite part of the movie is when the elevator opens and his character walks in to Aretha Franklin’s “Respect”, lol. One of the absolute best introductions of a character EVER!

  2. Cali says:

    Drew has taken care of herself and Hugh hasn’t. It’s hard to believe that they once played love interests.
    Wear sunscreen people and don’t smoke.
    And yes I know that Drew has probably had some work done but nothing drastic.

    • Kristin says:

      What are you talking about? Do you realize Hugh is nearly 20 years older than Drew? The man is his 60s and still looks fine as hell. As for Drew, she’s still in her 40s so I’d expect her to look like she does.

      • Cali says:

        Drew and Hugh were actual romantic partners in Music & Lyrics. Funny movie with great recreations of cheesy 80’s music videos.
        And yes Hugh is still a handsome man and yes he has a lot of sun damage.
        I’m slightly older than Hugh but I’m obsessive about avoiding the sun and wearing sunscreen. It makes a real difference to your skin.

  3. North of Boston says:

    Ugh, I remember the movie they did together. Aside from the fact they were like oil and water (and IIRC the way the film played it off like it was cute was annoying) there was the issue of their RL age and in-film power imbalance that made it kind of gross.

    He was nearing 50, she was 30ish … it was just uncomfortable.

  4. Ann says:

    I remember he turned down Colin Firth’s role in “The King’s Speech” because he didn’t think he had the acting chops for it. He would have been great!

    • booboocita says:

      He certainly looks more like George VI than Colin Firth did, although Firth was pretty damn good in the role.

  5. Barrett says:

    I fully enjoed this and he was amazing in a bout a boy! a fav of mine. He was a bit wicked in that.

  6. Lili says:

    Funny I always see him as william/ Harry standing getting to live a fun life acting

  7. JaneS says:

    Not even Cary Grant could continue to play the lead in rom-coms.
    I enjoy Hugh Grants movies.
    His dancing in Love Actually is always worth watching.
    He and Colin F. in BJD their slap fighting in the street, best part of the movie.
    Hugh is in a 3 part series playing a very charming, smarmy politician and is really excellent. I think “A very British scandal” something close to that.
    His dry sense of humor is very British.

    I do wish everyone would stop making comments about being too old, even jokingly.
    Jimmy Stewart, Henry Fonda, Cary Grant all made good movies thru their careers.

    I’ll see Wonka bc I enjoy musicals, not bc of Tim C.

  8. Lucía says:

    I love him. Grumpiness, dark humor and all. I’ve loved him in everything I’ve seen him in.

  9. Square2 says:

    Hugh has always been a very good actor. He in the 1987 film “Maurice” was great. I think he just enjoyed to portrait characters different from himself (straight white young male romantic interest) & maybe felt more comfortable to let it go in those characters.

    I enjoyed watching “A Very English Scandal” (though hate those Britain
    politicians), Hugh & Ben Whishaw in the same miniseries? GOLD!

  10. MyCatLovesTV says:

    Love, romance and humor can be perfect for all ages of couples! Just make them age-appropriate. We ladies of a certain age enjoy romance, too! And many of us enjoy Hugh Grant. He is aging very well in my humble opinion!

  11. Sasha says:

    I think he’s naturally a bit of a curmudgeon so these very earnest romcom leading roles didn’t suit him. I think he feels much more in his element playing villains. He made Paddington 2 what it is!