Hugh Grant: Rupert Murdoch a ‘Danger to Liberal Democracy’

Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for Laureus/JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images
Andreas Rentz/Getty Images for Laureus/JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

British actor Hugh Grant slammed Australian media mogul Rupert Murdoch as a “danger to liberal democracy” who made his life extremely difficult after Grant was arrested in Hollywood while receiving oral sex from a prostitute.

Grant made the comments during a new BBC documentary entitled Rise of The Murdoch Dynasty, which examines the phone-hacking scandal which rocked the billionaire’s News International empire between 2009 and 2011.

“The tabloids started writing about me when I suddenly had some success in 1994 after Four Weddings and a Funeral,” Grant explained. “In the wake of my Divine Brown escapade, I knew there would be a shit storm and thought ‘Okay this is my punishment.’ But anywhere you went, bang, there was a pap and you would think ‘How do they know where I am?’ We now know it’s because they were hacking your phone.”

“Life at that time was extremely difficult and remained difficult for 10 or 15 years, because their power grew and grew,” The Gentlemen actor continued. “Murdoch is a proper danger to liberal democracy, if liberal democracy is your thing.”

The 59-year-old star also reflected on the success of his anti-phone hacking campaign, which involved him setting up the organization Hacked Off, aimed at curbing the freedom of the press.

“Our little resistance grew,” Grant says in the documentary. “And it was immensely helpful that we all had each other, because it is a scary enemy, there is no doubt about that.”

Grant has become more involved in partisan politics in recent years, particularly with regard to Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, which he vehemently opposed. Last August, Grant sent an angry message to Prime Minister Boris Johnson describing him and his cabinet as a “little gang of masturbatory prefects.”

“You will not fuck with my children’s future,” the Paddington star wrote at the time. “You will not destroy the freedoms my grandfather fought two world wars to defend. Fuck off you over-promoted rubber bath toy. Britain is revolted by you and [your] little gang of masturbatory prefects.”

Unfortunately for Grant, Britain was not as revolted as he was. In last December’s general election, Johnson won a thumping majority, while every candidate Grant explicitly endorsed ended up losing their seat.

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