At the glitzy London premiere of "Wonka," the adaptation of Roald Dahl's beloved novel "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," cast and crew mingled in the festive atmosphere. However, a shadow of dissatisfaction hung over the festivities, which was cast by the unexpected words of Hugh Grant, who portrayed the acerbic Oompa Loompa in the film.
While co-star Timothy Chalamet patiently signed autographs for eager fans, Grant took a different approach when addressing the press. Surprisingly, he declared the making of "Wonka" an "absolutely horrible experience".
The popular actor surprised the journalists
The source of his frustration stems from the unique recording process.
To play the tiny Oompa Loompa, Grant donned a special motion capture suit and a bulky head-mounted camera, which digitally shrunk him significantly in post-production. "It was like a crown of thorns, very uncomfortable," he lamented.
"I made a big fuss about it. I really hated that shoot." Adding to his displeasure, Grant found that his physical performance was eventually replaced by animation. "Honestly, everything I was doing with my body was terrible and it was all replaced by animation," he declared, his voice laced with disappointment.
The actor's outburst was met with a mixture of awkwardness and amusement by his colleagues. When asked if the "hard work" paid off in the end, Grant replied bluntly, "Not really," prompting a round of laughter.
Hatred of acting was created
His negativity did not stem from animosity toward the film or its director, Paul King.
Rather, it stemmed from a deeper distaste for acting: "I don't have anything against Wonka and King, but I kind of hate making movies," he admitted. "But since I have many children, I need money and I have to work." The revelation of Grant's financial motivation added a layer of complexity to his outburst.
The actor, who became a father for the first time at the age of 50 and went on to have five children with two wives, is clearly facing pressure to support his large family. Grant's characteristically British wit and sharp sarcasm were instrumental in landing him the role.
As director Paul King himself stated: "In the novel, the Oompa Loompas are incredibly sarcastic, judgmental and cruel. So when I thought about the character, I realized that the only person who could believably embody such a bad guy would be Hugh."