When Russell Brand was 16, he inscribed a school-leaving card to his first girlfriend. “You might be as famous as me one day,” he wrote. “If so, see you at the top.” There was no “might”, not from the very beginning, about how famous Russell Brand expected to be.
But the rest of us might have been forgiven for thinking the game was up for Brand after the 2008 incident when, egged on by Jonathan Ross, he prank-called the elderly actor Andrew Sachs to boast he had slept with his granddaughter. The incident cost him his show on Radio 2 and turned much of the UK media against him. Yet, a year-and-a-half on from “Sachsgate”, while Ross’s star is falling, Brand has become a transatlantically famous name.
Having been eagerly photographed waltzing up the red carpet into Vanity Fair’s post-Oscars party with pop star fiancee Katy Perry, Brand now has six feature films either in development or post-production. A sequel to his bestselling autobiography, My Bookie Wook, is under contract with a new publisher, and Oliver Stone – who has said that Brand reminds him of Jim Morrison – is reported to be executive-producing a documentary about him. Less than two years after many were predicting the end of his career, this spindleshanked loon in women’s trousers looks set to take over the world. How, it’s fair to wonder, did this come about?
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