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'I Have Lots Of Children And Need Money': Hugh Grant Cheekily Defends 'Wonka' Role

Hugh Grant is once again making headlines — for being a cheeky grump.

The notorious eye roller is boldly admitting that he hated filming “Wonka” (2023), as the Willy Wonka prequel required extensive motion capture to turn him into an Oompa Loompa. Grant not only called the experience “drivel,” but also added he only endured it for the money.

“It was like a crown of thorns, very unconformable,” he recently told Metro about the array of cameras and other gadgets being stuck on his body so animators could miniaturize him into his diminutive character.

The film itself stars Timothée Chalamet as Wonka, who was previously portrayed by Gene Wilder and Johnny Depp. For Grant, who started out in the 1980s and ’90s as romantic lead in traditional films, acting with devices in this way was utterly confounding.

“I have lots of children and need money,” Grant told Metro about taking the gig.

The Brit added he was baffled during production and didn’t know if he should “act with my body or not” and “never received a satisfactory answer.” Grant joked his performance “was terrible” and ultimately “replaced with an animator” on computers, anyway.

When asked if the process was worth the end result, he said simply, “Not really.”

The film does reunite him with Paul King, who directed Grant to acclaim in “Paddington 2” (2017). King told Metro that he cast Grant as his Oompa Loompa after looking for someone “who could be a real shit.”

King explained the Oompa Loompas, which author Roald Dahl created in his “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” novel, were “incredibly sarcastic and judgmental and cruel.” Though Grant appears to fit that bill, the actor did admit that filming “Wonka” was often “quite fun.”

Dwarf actor George Coppen, meanwhile, recently slammed the decision to cast Grant.

“A lot of actors [with dwarfism] feel like we are being pushed out of the industry we love,” he told the BBC in July. “A lot of people, myself included, argue that dwarfs should be offered everyday roles in dramas and soap, but we aren’t getting offered those roles.”

“One door is being closed but they have forgotten to open the next one,” he continued.

“Wonka” hits theaters nationwide Dec. 15.

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