An Oscars red carpet interview between model Ashley Graham and noted Englishman Hugh Grant has split the room on whether the 62-year-old actor was rude or simply being what many of us recognise as simply British.


Context: Graham, who was catching guests as they entered the 95th Academy Awards for the standard lighthearted and usually harmless if banal tête-à-têtes, ran into Grant as he was making his way in. Graham attempted the familiar chit chat used on all guests: who are you excited to see win, what are you wearing.

Unfortunately, Grant was having none of it. “Nobody in particular,” and “Just my suit” were the succint responses.

Graham, who all credit to her powered through with a smile, then asked about his time filming the hit Rian Johnson mystery comedy Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, which was nominated for an Oscar in the Best Adapted Screenplay category.

Hugh Grant, Oscars, Ashley Graham
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 12: (L-R) Andie MacDowell and Hugh Grant speak onstage during the 95th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on March 12, 2023 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Now, Grant was in this. But it was a blink and you’ll miss it role as the partner of Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig). It was literally three seconds, as Grant quickly reminded Graham. This is where the interview ended and has left folks with a bad taste in their mouth.

But this is Grant at his most British. Little time for fuss, stiff-upper-lip style British where self-deprecation and sarcasm go hand in hand in conversation.

Meanwhile, Graham’s gracious and high energy approach is quintessentially American. Add to that a knowledge gap of cultural references – at one point, it seemed as though Grant was talking about the novel Vanity Fair while Graham thought he meant the magazine – and you have the perfect recipe for exquisite awkwardness that has led to countless column inches.

Perhaps the other issue is how we can often mistakenly equate the characters portrayed as one and the same person as the actor who plays them. Grant is, nor has he ever been, the affable, soft-spoken gent next door like his characters in Notting Hill or Four Weddings And A Funeral.

There’s also a reason why he’s so good at playing an absolute cad (think About A Boy and A Very English Scandal).

Not everyone who saw the exchange thought that Grant did anything wrong, however. Some even called for the actor to host next year’s Oscars. If it was up to Grant, the entire night would be done and dusted within 30 minutes leaving plenty of time for a pint and a kebab on the way home.