Jon Stewart has entered many a brief, minutes-long relationship with his Daily Show guests—some of them electric, some of them contentious, sadly, none of them leading to true love—but the one cad he can't seem to get over is Hugh Grant. In an intimate dishing session with best pal Stephen Colbert and a thousand other people at the Montclair Film Festival, and after opening up about how he'd almost quit the show over the "assholes" in charge at the time, Stewart moved on to discussing another asshole who'd walked into his life: Hugh Grant, who in 2009 was just a boy standing in front of Jon Stewart, asking him to love Did You Hear About The Morgans?
Stewart recalls that Grant, notorious for detesting celebrity and all its trappings, behaved in a typically boorish manner—"giving everyone shit the whole time, and he’s a big pain in the ass"—while complaining he had other places to be. (And other hosts on the side?) Nevertheless, he somehow still expected Stewart to help him promote his film, just because of his floppy-haired charms. When Stewart obliged by playing a publicist-supplied clip, he says Grant didn't even appreciate it, snapping, "What is that clip? It’s a terrible clip," to which Stewart shot back, "Well, then make a better fucking movie."
Despite this crackling, Tracy-and-Hepburn repartee, they just couldn't see that they were made for each other: A miffed Stewart deemed Grant his least favorite guest ever ("And we've had dictators on"), and said he would never be so foolish as to open his show up to Hugh Grant again. He was through with him, no matter how many times Grant might stammer that he was dreadfully sorry.
Then, running through the perpetually pouring rain that is Twitter, Hugh Grant once more turned up on Jon Stewart's doorstep: "Turns out my inner crab got the better of me with TV producer in '09," Grant said. "Unforgivable. J Stewart correct to give me kicking."
Was it too late? Hugh Grant held his breath and waited. His blue eyes, behind their fluttering eyelids, searched for any sign of forgiveness. Would Jon Stewart give him another chance? Would he—could he?—let him in again? Could he love—actually love him, despite his being so incredibly daft?
Jon Stewart said nothing. He exhaled slowly. He moved out of the doorway. Hugh Grant hung his head and gratefully stepped inside. A gentle Elvis Costello ballad began playing. A picture of a smiling Grant and Stewart, now eight months pregnant, filled the screen.
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