‘The Undoing’ Star Hugh Grant Blames 1 Movie for His Lengthy Break from Acting: ‘I Made Such a Massive Turkey’
Over the years, 2003’s Love Actually has developed a divisive reputation. Even star Hugh Grant can’t understand why it’s still so popular. Then again, the actor — who stars in HBO’s The Undoing — has been very vocal about how he lost his leading man status just a few years later. As it turns out, Grant can pinpoint the unfortunate career turn to one particular movie.
Hugh Grant had a hot streak of hit movies in the 1990s and early 2000s
Grant was without a doubt one of the biggest breakout stars of the mid-1990s. Following the success of Four Weddings and a Funeral, the actor began to pop up in more and more Hollywood productions. This late 1990s/early 2000s run includes such hits as Nine Months, Notting Hill, Bridget Jones’s Diary, Two Weeks Notice, and About a Boy.
After 2007’s Music and Lyrics, the actor’s big-screen roles became few and far between. In 2016’s Florence Foster Jenkins, he delivered an acclaimed turn opposite Meryl Streep. And his comeback was reaffirmed following a standout role as the villain in Paddington 2. Both performances earned Grant BAFTA nominations, his first since Four Weddings and a Funeral.
But 1 movie cut his run as a Hollywood leading man short
Fans of Grant’s work might have wondered why the actor seemed to shun Hollywood for nearly a decade. But as the actor recently revealed in an interview with the Los Angeles Times, he sees that period very differently. In fact, he believes it was the failure of a single movie that put the nail in the coffin of his career as a Hollywood leading man.
“I developed a bad attitude from about 2005 onwards, shortly after Music and Lyrics. I just had enough. Then I went back in 2009 and made another film. At that point, it wasn’t me giving up Hollywood. Hollywood gave me up because I made such a massive turkey with that film with Sarah Jessica Parker [Did You Hear About the Morgans?]. Whether I wanted to or not after that, the days of being a very well-paid leading man were suddenly gone overnight. It was slightly embarrassing, but it left life free for other things.”
Grant and Sarah Jessica Parker must have felt like a can’t-miss combo for Hollywood. After all, Music and Lyrics and the Sex and the City movie had both been big hits recently. Alas, Did You Hear About the Morgans? — which stars the pair as a separated couple forced to go into hiding after witnessing a murder — failed to recoup its budget at the box office.
Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman co-star in a new HBO limited series
Now having reinvented himself, Grant is back in a variety of projects. In early 2020, he appeared as a shady private investigator in action-comedy The Gentlemen. And now he’s ending the year with another high-profile gig in HBO’s limited series The Undoing.
Based on the 2014 novel You Should Have Known by Jean Hanff Korelitz, the story follows a psychotherapist (Nicole Kidman) who becomes embroiled in a murder investigation. Grant plays her husband, and both actors are enjoying strong reviews for her performances on the series.