About a Boy
About a Boy – 2002 | 101 mins | Comedy | Colour
Based on the latest Nick Hornby novel to be adapted for the screen, About a Boy is a comedy-drama directed by American Pie duo Chris and Paul Weitz. Hugh Grant�s portrayal of Will exudes a suaveness equivalent to that he exhibited in Bridget Jones�s Diary (2001), perhaps finally breaking away from his trademark foppish mannerisms, here he perfectly captures Will�s inner hollowness. While the rest of the cast including Collette and Weisz are adequate support without being remarkable, this is, as the title suggests, Grant and Hoult’s film.
Bachelor Will Freeman (Hugh Grant) is a rich, child-free and shallow North Londoner enjoying life in his thirties. His life revolves around the lads-mag lifestyle espoused by the likes of GQ and FHM; watching television, buying new CDs, designer clothes, worrying about little more than his hairstyle and Audi Coupe. Thanks to the royalties from his fathers one-hit wonder Christmas record Will has no requirement or compulsion to work; preferring instead to loaf about his London flat.
Will lives in fear of commitment, and after a liaison with a single mum, resolves to seek out relationships with single mothers on the assumption that they are more desperate. While seeking out vulnerable women, Will invents an imaginary son named Ned to justify his presence at SPAT � Single Parents Alone Together support group. As a result he meets the charming Suzie (Victoria Smurfit)� and inadvertently bonds with the son of Suzie�s best friend, Marcus (Nicholas Hoult), a 12-year-old misfit who blackmail�s Will. Marcus� mum is Fiona (Toni Collette), an eccentric, single, hippie-chick.
Marcus has problems with bullying at school, and a suicidal mother to deal with at home, and turns towards Will as a father figure. The two become unlikely friends, Will attempts to teach Marcus how to be a cool kid, taking him on shopping trips to buy the latest sneakers and CDs, likewise Will finds himself becoming less self-obsessed and maturing due to Marcus and Fiona�s influence. Will soon meets Rachel (Rachel Weisz), a bright and beautiful single-mum with a 12-year-old son of her own � and finds himself falling desperately in-love for the first time. Complications arise when Rachel assumes Marcus is Will�s real son. When he eventually admits the truth to Rachel, she dumps him, leaving Will with the realisation of how hollow his life is.
Chris Weitz: Director
Paul Weitz: Director
Rod McLean: Art Direction
Gary Freeman: Art Direction
Remi Adefarasin: Cinematography
Joanna Johnston: Costume Design
Nick Moore: Editing
Graham Johnston: Makeup Department
Damon Gough: Original Music
Tim Bevan: Producer
Eric Fellner: Producer
Robert De Niro: Producer
Jane Rosenthal: Producer
Jim Clay: Production Design
Peter Hedges: Script
Paul Weitz: Script
Chris Weitz: Script
Christian Bourne: Sound Department
Joe DeAngelis: Sound Department
Bill Meadows: Sound Department
Samuel Webb: Sound Department