Drawing: Hugh Grant

Hugh Grant

Fifty four year old Hugh Grant thinks he’s getting too old to play the lead in romantic comedies. Yesterday he was at the Odeon cinema in Kensington for the premiere of his latest film, The Rewrite, and he doesn’t think it is a rom-com… or maybe just a little bit.

Not one for stardom and celebrity status, Hugh, “isn’t feeling very showbizzy at the moment”. In fact he’s more of an anti-film star. He often claims that acting isn’t a true calling, just something he fell into. But he is known for a very strong work ethic on set and will do endless takes to achieve the desired standard.

His films have earned US$2.4 billion from 25 theatrical releases worldwide, especially in the genre of romantic comedy. Although recently he played several non-comedic cameo roles, all in one film. He plays six characters in the epic drama Cloud Atlas, all of which he said are, “incredibly evil”.

He has joined the latest craze to replace the ‘ice bucket challenge’. Launched by Jemima Khan, ‘wake up call’ is where famous people take pictures of themselves after they’ve just woken up. It raises money for Unicef’s Syria Emergency Fund. Others to do it are Stephen Fry, Derren Brown, Tom Hiddleston and Nigella Lawson.

For the sake of recognition and avoiding rejection I based my sketch on a more familiar looking Hugh. I was a last minute thing. The Odeon in London’s fashionable High Street Kensington is a little way out of my normal beaten track. Hugh makes his acting appear spontaneous. He is known for his nonchalant approach with a touch of sarcasm and irony, precisely timed dialogue, delivery and facial expressions.

Hugh was generous with his time for the sizeable crowd at the small cinema, signing graphs and posing for selfies. His quick efficient sig was splashed across my drawing, and belatedly I asked for a dedication, “To Mark” in my six-years-living-in-London-antipodean-accent. “Matt?” he asked, “no, with a k,” I replied. Puzzled, he gave his famous smile and returned the drawing to me…

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