Hugh's Mane Talent 

Hugh Grant’s Hair is a consummate performer, among the best in the business in fact, and often as memorable as Grant’s characters. We here at the Current thought it was high time these follicles got the credit they’re due. So we sat down with Hugh Grant’s Hair to discuss its onscreen history. Here’s what it had to say about its roles, including its appearance in the new Hugh Grant/Drew Barrymore flick, Music and Lyrics.

 

Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994): “Ah yes, this is what I call Classic Hugh Grant. When Four Wedding’s screenwriter Richard Curtis later wrote Notting Hill for us and gave our character in that flick the nickname ‘Floppy,’ he was poking fun at this hairdo. Tight on the sides. Floppy up top. Frizzy and boyish. I look back on making this movie and can’t help but wonder, ‘Why didn’t anyone tell us we looked that bad?’”

 

Extreme Measures (1996): “This is one of those few times Grant actually got it in himself to act his ass off, delivering one of his darkest performances to date. It’s also the premiere of what I like to call Grown-Up Hugh. Here, I grew out the length up top just a bit, worked in some mousse to control the frizz, and wound up with an adult’s look. Now, I’m not saying it’s sophisticated, but, hey, it worked — even if the movie didn’t.”

 

Notting Hill (1999): “Personally, this is the best thing I think Grant has ever done. I’d like to say it’s the best thing I’ve ever done, but I stuck to the Grown-Up Hugh that, by this point, lacked any dramatic punch. I’m Hugh Grant’s Hair, dammit. I expect to be talked about, and I was just too innocuous here.”

 

Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001): “Finally, Grant listened and around 2000 started to let me grow out. When I told him, ‘Let’s get some length,’ I didn’t think he’d take me this seriously. Every scene he’s in, kanoodling with that cow Renée Zellweger, I’m hanging in front of his eyes or looped around his ears. I’m just long, like, all over. Way too much going on. Grant tried to call this the Sexy Grant. I slapped him like a bitch for that.”

 

About a Boy (2002): “The director suggested this haircut, but it turned out to be just what I needed and definitely what Grant needed since he was really starting to show his age. In order to play a man-child who becomes a father figure to a mildly retarded kid with no style, we went with what I now call the Hip Grant. Short, clipped, and messy. Heavy on the product, too, in order to pull off that just-got-out-of-bed look. This is the first time I really felt like I was pulling my own weight onscreen.”

 

Two Weeks Notice (2002): “Marc Lawrence, who directs our new movie Music and Lyrics, had me grow out Hip Grant a bit. Still short, but more mature. I was a lot better than this movie, which was just atrocious, trite, romantic-comedy crap.”

 

Love Actually (2003): “To play a prime minister, a few more millimeters were called for. We had to look professional, after all. Not hip, sure, but still young — and not floppy. I wasn’t willing to go that route again, even if screenwriter-turned-director Richard Curtis thinks we do our best work floppy.”

 

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004): “Grant wanted to go with Sexy Grant again, like the first Bridget Jones, so I had to slap him. Again. I stuck with the same cut from Love Actually, but with more product.”

 

American Dreamz (2006): “To play a hip music-producer-turned-television-personality, I suggested the Hip Grant. Grant, who by this point had stopped caring about his acting career, said, ‘Whatever. Just tell me when the money is in my bank account.’”

 

Music and Lyrics (2007): “Marc Lawrence came to us and said, ‘Listen, I know I fucked up that Two Weeks Notice movie, but what do you say I find another big-name leading lady with whom you have zip chemistry and then let both of you under-perform throughout the production, suffer through ridiculously clichéd scenes while muttering god-awful dialogue, and, oh yeah, forget to provide any conflict?’ Grant, who just bought a diamond-studded toothpick because he doesn’t know what to do with his money anymore and doesn’t give a damn about the movies either, said, ‘Enh. Whatever, mate.’ I wanted to stick with the Hip Grant, since I think that’s when I do my best work, but, in the end, we went with the style from Love Actually. What does it matter? No one’s going to remember this movie anyway.”


More by Cole Haddon

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