Ashley Graham says 'kindness' is key after awkward interview with Hugh Grant

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - MARCH 12: Ashley Graham attends the 95th Annual Academy Awards on March 12, 2023 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)
Ashley Graham still had fun at the Oscars despite her viral pre-show exchange with Hugh Grant. (Photo: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)

Ashley Graham isn't sweating the small stuff — like Hugh Grant rolling his eyes at her at the Oscars.

The TV host and model was asked about her awkward interview with the British actor during ABC's Countdown to the Oscars red carpet pre-show on Sunday and kept it professional.

“You know what, my mama told me to kill people with kindness," she replied to a probing TMZ camera person on Monday. "So there ya go."

She declined to send a message to Grant during the impromptu airport exchange, instead offering, "I had so much fun" anyway. "My feet hurt, though, but I had fun."

The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover girl and body-positive icon was tasked with interviewing the prickly presenter during the pre-show, which was also hosted by Vanessa Hudgens and Lilly Singh. Things turned sour during her first question — asking his favorite part of the Oscars — when she misunderstood his answer.

"It’s fascinating... It’s vanity fair," he replied, meaning a frivolous and and ostentatious scene. However, Graham thought he was referring to the famous Vanity Fair magazine afterparty and replied, "It’s all about Vanity Fair, where we let loose and have a bit of fun."

Things went further south from there. She asked who he was rooting for and he said, "No one in particular." As for what he was wearing, he said, "Just my suit." The interview painfully went on, as Graham tried to get him to give more than a four word reply. She asked him about his cameo in Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, but he didn't play ball there either, replying, "I'm barely in it. I'm in it for about three seconds."

Hugh Grant and Andie MacDowell present an award during the Oscars show at the 95th Academy Awards in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, U.S., March 12, 2023. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Hugh Grant presented with his Four Weddings and a Funeral co-star Andie MacDowell at the Oscars. He also attended the Vanity Fair afterparty. (Photo: Reuters/Carlos Barria)

As they wrapped up, she thanked him for stopping to talk to her and he replied, "Yeah." He rolled his eyes as he turned away from her — and it was caught on camera.

The painful moment was the talk of social media on Sunday night and the news on Monday with just about everybody weighing in. Sharon Osbourne said he was "out of order" on Piers Morgan Uncensored. "If you don't want to talk to press ... don't do the carpet. That's the way it is," she said with Morgan agreeing.

Veteran red carpet interviewer Jason Kennedy, from Access Hollywood and Today, tweeted support to Graham as well.

However, many felt Grant — who doesn't hide his disdain of celebrity and is known for challenging interviews (see: Jon Stewart, who dubbed him his worst Daily Show guest "and we've had dictators on the show"), did nothing wrong). It was just Grant being Grant. Pop culture reporter Kyle Buchanan was all for Grant hosting the next Oscars, doing away with the schmoozy nature of the Hollywood event.

Graham told CNN at the Vanity Fair Oscar party that she felt "very supported" after her interview with Grant went viral on Twitter. For the record, Grant attended the Vanity Fair party too.

Besides, Graham had a lot of fun with her prime-time hosting gig other than that one minute with the Four Weddings and a Funeral star, including this moment striking poses with fun and game Oscar performer Rihanna.