Thursday, April 26, 2007

A tale of two arrests

Hugh Grant burst onto the scene in 1994 with his star turn in the romantic comedy Four Weddings and a Funeral. American audiences, especially women, fell in love with the blue-eyed actor --the prototypical charming Englishman complete with a shy stammer and a well-tailored wardrobe.

His glamorous model/actress girlfriend, Elizabeth Hurley, in tow, Grant seemed to poised to cut to the front of the line of Hollywood's leading men. But an incident at one of Tinseltown's most hollowed landmarks derailed his ascent.

In 1995 Grant was arrested for receiving oral sex from a prostitute while in his car on Sunset Boulevard. Not just any prostitute, this was a common streetwalker, and one who was much the worse for wear.

After a couple years in the wilderness Grant recovered, and has been a successful actor ever since. But, permanently branded by Divine Brown and his reckless libido, he was never able to reach his promise.

Fast forward to yesterday and Hugh Grant was arrested again. This time for assaulting a photographer outside his London home. Grant's weapon of choice . . . a tub of baked beans.

I can just imagine Grant muttering to himself as he contemplates hurling the baked beans at the paparazzo. Finally, after working up the courage to initiate the assault, Grant-- in a rare, awkward burst of aggression-- strikes the photog with the side dish.

As the gooey beans drip down the face of his victim, Grant jumps back and covers his mouth bashfully. "Terribly sorry," Grant says. "I just . . ." he stammers, before taking a handkerchief from his pocket. "Oh here," he concedes, and offers the handkerchief to the photographer.

"Well I guess I won't be eating those," Grant slyly remarks, as the photographer cleans his face. They both laugh.

Now that's the sort of English charm we expected when we first meet Grant. OK, I'm ignoring the part where Grant kicks the photographer and wishes death upon his family. But still, imagine if Grant was somehow able to have reversed the order of his two arrests. The world would have been his.


Anonymous said...

In the movie version, Grant then has to awkwardly explain to his waiting love interest (wide-eyed girl next door type, of course) why he returned home from ye olde shoppe with no beans. "Terrible thing, this...I...I was...there was...some bloke driving a great big old lorrie, and..." blah blah blah

JT said...

And then they settle down for an afternoon of tea and double entendres