Hugh Grant says he tried to get out of filming ‘excruciating’ Love Actually scene

‘I saw it in the script and I thought, “Well, I’ll hate doing that”’

Louis Chilton
Sunday 27 November 2022 10:16 GMT
Love Actually stars Hugh Grant and Emma Thompson reunite for anniversary special

Hugh Grant has opened up about the difficulties he faced filming one of Love Actually’s best-known scenes.

In the 2003 Christmas film, Grant played David, the Prime Minister of the UK who falls in love with a junior member of his household staff, played by Martine McCutcheon.

One memorable scene saw the character dancing around 10 Downing Street to “Jump” by The Pointer Sisters, before he is spotted by a member of staff.

Speaking to Diane Sawyer for ABC’s The Laughter & Secrets of Love Actually: 20 Years Later, Grant claimed that his dancing was “out of time” in the film’s final cut.

“I saw it in the script and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll hate doing that’,” he recalled. “I didn’t fancy doing the dance at all, let alone rehearsing it.”

Director Richard Curtis then interjected, claiming that Grant “kept saying ‘no’” to the scene.

“I think he was hoping I’d get ill or something and we’d say, ‘Oh, well, what a shame, we’ll have to lose that dancing sequence’,” he said, per a preview in Metro.

Curtis added that there had been a “contractual obigation” for Grant to perform the scene, which the actor then jokingly described as a “contractual guillotine”.

Hugh Grant in ‘Love Actually'
Hugh Grant in ‘Love Actually' (Universal)

‘And I’m out of rhythm, by the way, especially at the beginning when I wiggle my arse,” he said.

“To this day, there’s many people – and I agree with them – who think it’s the most excruciating scene ever committed to celluloid,” Grant added. “But then some people like it!”

The Love Actually reunion will air on ABC in the US on 29 November, and will feature interviews with the cast and creators of the popular Christmas romcom.

Plans for the special to air in the UK have yet to be announced.

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