Hugh Grant says playing charming characters is 'behind me'

Hugh Grant in The Undoing (Credit: HBO)
Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman in The Undoing. (HBO)

Hugh Grant is done playing charming characters in movies and television shows, admitting that he now looks for much more complicated and flawed individuals to portray.

The actor stars opposite Nicole Kidman in the new HBO limited series The Undoing, a dark thriller from Emmy-winning David E Kelly.

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Grant plays prominent New York City doctor Jonathan, who goes missing after a violent death, leaving his wife Grace, portrayed by Kidman, to try and pick up the pieces while salvaging her own career.

The British star has already received some impressive reviews for his work in The Undoing, but during a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly he admitted that he was initially rather skeptical about signing up.

That’s because, after reading the script for episode one, he just saw Jonathan as a “charming, too good to be true child cancer doctor,” which Grant had absolutely no interest in portraying.

“I feel like that part of my career, where I’m the charming leading man, I’m quite happy to have that behind me,” he said.

“I’ve been doing these much more character-y roles recently and enjoying them, and they seem to work quite well. And I didn’t want to go back to sort of just doing a version of Hugh Grant.”

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Luckily for Grant, it didn’t take long for the flawed side of Jonathan’s character to emerge. In fact, Grant said that he was “extremely interested in the character from the end of episode two through to” the show’s sixth and final episode.

Grant is clearly having a great time portraying these kind of characters, too, admitting that he is “very drawn to characters where two or three or five or six people live in one human being.”

He said that this is much more like real life, as all people “change according to circumstance and environment.”

The Undoing premieres on Sky Atlantic on Monday at 9pm.