Hugh Grant Admits He Thought Renee Zellweger As Bridget Jones Was 'A Stretch'

“There was a whole scandal about why isn’t this a British actress?”

Hugh Grant admitted there were some concerns having Renee Zellweger play the titular character of “Bridget Jones’ Diary.”

In a new BBC documentary called “Being Bridget Jones,” the actor revealed how he initially reacted to the American actress taking on the British role in the 2001 film adaptation of Helen Fielding’s novel.

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“There was a whole scandal about why isn’t this a British actress?” Hugh began. “I didn’t know Renee Zellweger, and a Texan playing a British character, it did seem like a stretch.”

The “The Undoing” star, 60, went on to say her first attempt was “good” but it was “startling” how much she sounded like Princess Margaret.

“She was told to kind of, well she thought she better loosen it up a bit,” he continued. “Then she came in and it was Princess Margaret having had a stroke. But a week later it was bang on.”

“Bridget Jones’ Diary” became an international hit, grossing over $280 million worldwide and nabbing a Best Actress Oscar nomination for Renee.

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Both Hugh and Renee would reprise their roles for the film’s 2004 sequel called “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason.”

Earlier this month, Hugh opened up about his enduring friendship with Renee.

“I love Renee, she’s one of the few actresses I haven’t fallen out with,” he admitted on  SiriusXM’s “The Jess Cagle Show.”

“We got on very well together and we still exchange long emails,” he added. “Hers in particular, at least 70 pages each, interesting stuff, but quite hard to decipher. She’s a properly good egg and a genius.”

In the same interview, Hugh said he would consider returning as Daniel Cleaver in another sequel to “Bridget Jones’ Diary.”


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