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Hugh Grant received the BFI Fellowship this evening for his outstanding contribution to film over the course of the last three decades. The award was presented to the British master of rom-com acting by film producer and co-chairman of Working Title, Eric Fellner. The BFI Chairman’s Dinner was hosted by outgoing Chair, Greg Dyke.
It’s hard to believe that Grant is even old enough to have been working for more than three decades, or to have 40 films and 21 TV roles under his belt. Those roles include Roman Polanski’s "Bitter Moon," Mike Newell’s "Four Weddings and a Funeral," Roger Michel’s "Notting Hill," Dan Cleaver’s "Bridget Jones’ Diary" (I & II), Richard Curtis’ "Love Actually" and Chris and Paul Weitz’s "About A Boy." Grant has also notably collaborated with a number of filmmakers for a various projects, including with writer and director Marc Lawrence. Their business relationship has produced fan favorites including "Two Weeks Notice" and "Music and Lyrics."
Grant’s films have grossed an estimated $2.4 billion worldwide, making him one of the UK’s greatest box office hitters of all time. He has also earned a BAFTA, Golden Globe and Honorary César Award.
It seems fitting that the man so strongly associated with British entertainment would be honored by the institution that prides itself on ensuring Britain’s legacy and impact on film.
Of the honor, Dyke said, "We are absolutely delighted to honur Hugh Grant with a BFI Fellowship. With impeccable comic timing and huge doses of his unique, ironic self-deprecating and very British charm, Hugh always pulls off the hardest thing of all — a seemingly effortless performance. I can assure you it’s not. Hugh’s acting talents are prodigious and his contribution to cinema enormous. He is a British icon and has been making literally billions of people all over the world laugh, cry —and fall in love with him of course — for over 30 years."
Grant’s latest film, "Florence Foster Jenkins," will hit U.S. theaters on May 6.