Richard E. Grant ranks among the few Hollywood actors who have distinguished themselves in the course of their acting career. The British-Swazi began his career way back in the early ‘80s and has gone on to make his mark in the global movie industry. Grant has earned widespread and critical acclaim for his appearances in addition to accumulating a large haul of award nominations, winning several of them. Notable among his accolades include nominations from the Golden Globe, Academy Awards, Screen Actors Guild, and BAFTA.
Richard E. Grant Early Acting Roles Came in the 80s
The widely acclaimed actor was born on the 5th of May, 1957, in Mbabane, in present-day Eswatini. He had his elementary education at St. Mark School in his hometown then went on to attend the prestigious Waterford Kamhlaba United World College of Southern Africa, Mbabane. Upon graduating from the international college, Richard E. Grant proceeded to the University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa to study drama.
In 1982 after graduating from the university, Grant opted to relocate to London, England. He immediately set out in the movie industry by registering as a member of the British Actors’ Equity Association- a trade union for performing artists, stage managers, designers, and creative workers. Prior to relocating to London, he joined the Space Theatre in Cape Town.
A couple of years later, Richard got his first feature film role in 1987 when he played the title character in Withnail and I which was a highly successful British film winning the Best Screenplay Award in 1988. The movie also earned Grant the admiration and praise of critics and fans alike as it was listed 29th on the list of Top 100 British Films of all time in 1999. that has been made in 1991. Not long after, the prolific actor started landing roles in Hollywood movies and quickly carved a niche for himself as a perfect fit for tough characters in films.
The acclaimed actor subsequently appeared in the classic film, How to Get Ahead in Advertising released in 1989. All through the ‘90s, Richard E. Grant was relatively busy appearing in many film and television productions. He played minor roles as well as major roles in the productions. Notable among the productions he was involved in include Mountains of the Moon (1990), L.A. Story (1991), Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992), Franz Kafka’s It’s a Wonderful Life (1993), Twelfth Night: Or What You Will (1996), St. Ives (1998), The Match (1999), and Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death (1999)
His Acting Roles in Subsequent Years
Following the advent of the millennium, Richard Grant upped his game and appeared in a number of supporting roles in various highly rated films. Notable among his television features include his role in the 2012 Doctor Who Christmas special titled, The Snowmen. He was also seen in A Royal Scandal in 1997, Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death and A Christmas Carol both in 1999, Sherlock: Case of Evil (2002), Home Farm Twins (2005), Jekyll and Hyde (2015), and A Series of Unfortunate Events (2019).
In 2008, Richard played the character of Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady, held at the Theatre Royal in Sydney, Australia. He reprised the role in 2017 at the famous Lyric Opera of Chicago. In 2009, Richard also appeared in God of Carnage as Alain Reille at the Theatre Royal Bath. He reprised the role at Cheltenham, Richmond, Canterbury, Milton Keynes, and Brighton.
Sometime in 2012, Grant started his own show titled, Richard E. Grant’s Hotel Secrets. The show ran for two seasons, airing 14 episodes, and ended in 2014. It gained international recognition and has been aired in countries like Hungary and Finland.
The actor’s most recent television role is in Dispatches from Elsewhere which was premiered on March 1, 2020. The plot of the show is an adaptation of The Institute by Spencer McCall and Jeff Hull. Grant appears as the main cast of the popular show. The Hollywood star is also billed to appear on the Upcoming miniseries Loki set to be released in 2021.
Richard E. Grant’s Other Endeavors & Accolades
Grant has also tried his hands on directorial roles and screenplay writing. In 2005, he wrote and directed Wah-Wah which was an adaptation of his own childhood experiences. He also published The Wah-Wah Diaries which received positive critical reviews.
A significant non-career achievement for the British actor would be when he helped the authorities uncover millions of dollars lost in a scam. Grant exposed a bogus sale of an AIDS cure valued at $98 million which was aired on BBC’s Newsnight on December 1, 2006.
More so, Richard E. Grant has been recognized for his exceptional acting ability and portrayal of roles. He has been on the receiving end of a number of awards and honors since he began his career in the ‘80s. He was nominated in 1995 for Best Live Action Short Film at the Academy Awards for his role in Franz Kafka’s, It’s a Wonderful Life. The prolific actor eventually earned his first award in 2002 when he received the Screen Actors Guild Award for his outstanding role in Gosford Park.
Furthermore, Richard has received a couple of other high profile nominations. In 2019, he was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture. In that same year, Grant also received a British Academy Film Award nomination for the same category from the Golden Globe Award nomination.
Grant has a Family Bond with Joan Washington, His Wife of over Two Decades
Unlike most Hollywood celebrities who can’t seem to hold on to their marriages, Grant has done a pretty good job so far holding onto his. However, the same cant be said of his mother, Leonne Esterhuysen, and his after, Henrik Esterhuysen who served as the head of education in Swaziland on behalf of the British government.
An unfortunate incident of infidelity occurred in 1967 and Richard who was 10 as at the time was the one who caught his mother with another man at the backseat of a car. This singular act was what signaled the end of his parents’ marriage. More so, Grant who has only one sibling, a younger brother named Stuart Grant is not in speaking terms with him as they are estranged from each other. Stuart is believed to have his base in South Africa where he works as a tour guide in Johannesburg.
Nonetheless, the Swazi-British actor is happily married to Joan Washington, a skilled voice coach. The duo met for the first time in the early ‘80s and they began dating shortly afterward. Richard and Joan exchanged their marital vows sometime in 1986 in the presence of their family and friends.
They share a daughter together named Olivia Grant as well as a son named Tom whom Joan already had from a previous relationship before tying the nuptial knot with the film star. The family has remained quite united over the years and Richard, together with his daughter in 2014 went ahead to started a unisex perfume line in London. The brand known as JACK has proven to be quite a success since it was founded.