Comedian, YouTube host, and sentient hair factory Russell Brand tells The Financial Times’ Lucy Kellaway that he may be done with acting and Hollywood. Given that Brand exists to a) talk about himself at as quick a rate as humanly possible, and b) immediately say whatever thought pops into his head at a given moment—especially if it’ll blow the minds of “squares”—it remains to be seen how binding that comment will be. Especially since it was also announced today that the now-possibly-former actor is currently working on an economic documentary with director Michael Winterbottom.
Brand made the statement as part of a wide-ranging discussion, in which the actor-turned-online-demagogue arrived in a chauffeured Mercedes, talked about how he doesn’t like to think about money, and apparently tried to touch, hug, or be photographed with every single person in the restaurant—including Kellaway. When asked about whether his cash-agnostic philosophy meant he was done with Hollywood and big-budget films, Brand replied, “It probably does mean that, yes,” before smiling and checking to make sure every single person in a 10-foot radius was looking at him and listening to the thing he’d just said.
In the past, Brand has given scene-stealing performances in films by playing self-absorbed, vaguely genial charisma monsters, as in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and somewhat less-successful roles playing any other kind of character. Perhaps he’s realized he does his best work as himself, hence the announcement that he’s working with The Trip director Winterbottom on a new documentary about economic inequality, titled The Emperor’s New Clothes. The film began shooting earlier this month.