A war of words has developed between Hugh Grant and UK politician Sajid Javid over a handshake snub.
In an interview with ES Magazine published today, Javid, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, claimed that Grant had refused to shake his hand when the two met at the recent London premiere of Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman.
In the story, Javid calls the actor “incredibly rude” and claims Grant is part of an “elite” who “look down on working class people no matter what station they reach in life.”
Florence Foster Jenkins actor Grant hit back on his Twitter account this morning with his own version of events, publishing a series of quotes that came via a spokesperson. (See the tweets below.) His posts stated that the altercation was over Javid’s treatment of the victims of phone-hacking, which he cited as “borderline contemptuous.”
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“Grant had a different version of events. When offered a handshake, Grant’s words were – ‘If you don’t mind, I won’t shake your hand because you were rude and dismissive to the victims or press abuse when you met them as culture secretary [a position he held between 2014 and 2015].’
“Hugh would like to point out that the victims in question were not celebrities. They were people with personal family tragedies who had been abused by sections of the press.
“He said Grant was referring to a meeting between Mr Javid and ‘the victims of press abuse… (who) reported back that his attitude in the meeting was ‘borderline contemptuous’.”
Grant has been a vocal supporter of the group Hacked Off, which has campaigned for the victims of illegal phone-tapping by UK media.
The actor is no stranger to a public spat. Last month, he called UK PM Boris Johnson an “over-promoted rubber bath toy” over his attempts to push through Brexit.
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