Hugh Grant assumed the role of citizen journalist and got a little revenge on the British tabloid that hacked into his and other famous Brits’ phone messages. The result is way better than his last three films combined.
After Grant’s car broke down, he was offered a lift from former News of the World reporter Paul McMullan, who had originally approached the actor to take his picture. Later, Grant arranged a meeting with McMullan and secretly recorded it. The transcripts, published by the New Statesman, contain some surprising confessions about a phone hacking scandal that targeted celebs such as Sienna Miller, who is suing News of the World.
In the transcript of the secretly taped interview, McMullan says former News editor Andy Coulson, who later served as communications director to Prime Minister David Cameron, “knew all about” the tapes. Coulson “rose quickly to the top; he wanted to cover his tracks all the time,” McMullen says in the transcript. “He’d want to make sure they could never sue, so he wanted us to hear the celeb like you on tape.” Of the prime minister, McMullen tells Grant, “Cameron must have known — that’s the bigger scandal.”
News of the World’s parent company, the Rupert Murdoch-owned News International, released a formal apology to the victims of the phone hacking scandal this weekend but has yet to respond to Grant’s interview.
It seems Grant might go from playing the prime minister in “Love Actually” to getting the real one, and some other power players, in a bit of trouble.