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Why we all love Richard E. Grant

— by Alyson Walsh

Photo: New York Times

Richard E. Grant is excited about his awards nominations and so are we. The unpretentious, un-showbizzy British character actor is up for a Bafta and an Oscar for the first time in his career; film industry recognition a mere 32-years after his brilliant debut in Withnail & I. When asked if he’ll be able to ‘play it cool on the night’, Grant told the Guardian’s Hadley Freeman, ‘I very much doubt it. Ha ha! I’ll never forget this ride for the rest of my life.’

Grant was superb as the therapist’s therapist in the recent Channel 4 comedy Hang-Ups; and both he and Melissa McCarthy are fantastic in ‘Can You Ever Forgive Me?’ the film of the confessional book by American writer Lee Israel. When her career stalls in 1990s, Israel (McCarthy) is told by her literary agent to find a new career. Which she inadvertently does, forging letters to make ends meet – when the FBI make an appearance Israel enrolls Jack Hock (Grant) as a rogueish accomplice. Both actors have received Academy Award nominations for ‘Can You Ever Forgive Me?‘ McCarthy for Best Actress for her portrayal of the ’51-year-old woman who likes cats more than people’, and Richard E. Grant for Best Supporting Actor. I could watch Richard E. Grant playing mischievous all day.

In an interview with the New York Times Grant said, ‘Actors, mid-50s onwards, your parts, your salary, it’s diminishing returns. I’m almost 62-years-old. I’ve never been nominated for anything. So it’s beyond anything I could even begin to imagine.’ Going on to detail McCarthy’s reaction to the news, ‘She could barely speak either. We were just a blub fest. No shame in being a grown man crying.’

 

Fingers crossed for 60-something success this awards season.

 

The second and third photos are from the Mr Porter feature ‘A very Hollywood Holiday with Mr Richard E. Grant.

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Richard E. Grant is excited about his awards nominations and so are we.