Richard E. Grant

Richard E. Grant has had an emotional fortnight.  On 23rd January he found out he was nominated for his first Oscar, at the age of 61.  Then a week later, he shed tears over a tweet by Barbra Streisand.  The sense of anticipation in his life will be building up to the Oscars ceremony, which will take place on 24th February.

Birth Chart

Grant has the Sun exactly conjunct Mercury in Taurus, in a triple conjunction with Venus.  Taurus is a sign of deep feeling, and appreciation of the Arts.  Venus is exactly on his South Node, indicating that his past lives were very much involved in cultivating the Arts.  His Moon and Mars are in Cancer, and together with the Taurean planets, show that he is very much in tune with the female side of life.  Mars sextile Pluto in his chart gives him the potential of great stamina, and the resource of a powerhouse of energy.  His Mars and Jupiter receive all sextiles and trines, which is a very positive energy.  Saturn in his chart is unaspected, so he may have issues around rules, discipline and authority, and will express these himself in a very individualistic way.

Life and Career

Richard was born and brought up in Swaziland, and has an exotic mixed ancestry composed of English, Dutch/Afrikaner and German heritage. He obtained a degree in English and Drama from Cape Town University, and moved to London in 1982.

He made his name with the title role in the film “Withnail and I” in 1987.  Mark Kermode in the Observer this morning describes the characterization of this role as “emotionally unguarded” and contrasts it with his current role in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

In between that first success and his current success (a time span of  31 or so years) Richard has taken a variety of roles.  He hit it off particularly with the comedy actor Steve Martin in 1991 during the filming of L.A. Story, communicating through fax.  Steve Martin’s funnybone is represented in his chart by a conjunction of Jupiter and Chiron, but he has a sparky conjunction of Mars and Uranus in his chart, which is trine Richard E. Grant’s Chiron.  Richard E. Grant would find this exchange particularly healing, because his natal Chiron has four squares to it.

Chiron seems to be an important planet for Richard by transit (we do not know its exact placement within his Houses because we do not have a birth time for him).  On 1st Deember 2006, he exposed a scam selling a bogus cure for AIDS on the television programme Newsnight.  At that time, Neptune (exposing a scandal) was transiting his natal Chiron in Aquarius (healing for society).  The character Jack, who he plays in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” falls victim to AIDS.  This may reflect part of Grant’s Inner Healer mission.

Oscar nomination

On 23rd January, Grant posted a video of himself outside a building where he lived in London, starting out as an actor, with enormous glee:  “I’m absolutely overwhelmed! 36 years ago I rented this bedsit here which is one room in Notting Hill Gate for £30 a week… I cannot believe that 36 years later I’m standing here as an almost 62-year-old man and having an Oscar nomination, ha!”

He had by way of transits Saturn trine his Sun, a long overdue plaudit, Uranus trine his Pluto – a profound surprise, and Neptune sextile exactly his Sun to the day – a sublime experience, connected with film and acting.  Pluto was also trine his natal Jupiter, indicating a profound success.

Melissa McCarthy

In the film, Melissa McCarthy co-stars (and has also received nominations).  She plays real life author Lee Israel, who fell on hard times and became a professional forger, with the help of Richard’s character Jack, a flamboyant drug dealer.  Mark Kermode describes this partnership as a “perfect pairing”, and that seems to be one of the secrets of the film’s success.

Richard’s Neptune is exactly conjunct Melissa’s Jupiter, showing great inspiration.  There is also a high-intensity conjunction between her Mars and his Pluto.  At the time of the nomination, the North Node (karmic reward) was sextile her natal Pluto (great meaning in her life).

Lee Israel

Lee Israel, the woman on whom the film is based (stemming from her own autobiography), deserves a mention here.  She had Mercury in Scorpio (a forensic mind) exactly trine Jupiter, making her an expert forger.  She had Jupiter trine exactly Melissa’s Neptune, which is an inspired rapport.  Lee’s posthumous transits include Chiron trine her natal Mercury, a healing of the mind.  Kermode describes the film as a “gently forgiving account” of Lee’s life.

Letter to Barbra Streisand

Richard popped up again on our newsfeed on 30th January, because of a letter he had written when he was 14 years old, and a huge fan of Barbra Streisand (a fellow Taurean).  At the time, he was still living in Swaziland, and because she was under stress at the time, he wrote to her offering her a refuge at his family home where there was “no chance of being mobbed”.  He shared the letter on Twitter on 30th, and she replied “What a wonderful letter … and look at you now! You’re terrific in your latest movie with Melissa, congratulations and love Barbra”.  He was apparently in tears.  What was the synastry between this star and superfan?  Her Sun was exactly square his Uranus, their Marses were closely conjunct in Cancer, her Mars was trine his Pluto (connecting in with his powerhouse of energy), Her Pluto was exactly conjunct his Uranus (a big impact).

On 30th, Richard had Jupiter exactly sextile his natal Chiron in Aquarius (again, I feel that Chiron is important in his chart), Saturn still trine his natal Sun, Uranus trine his Pluto, and Neptune sextile his Sun (but easing away from its position at his nomination).  But Pluto is growing ever closer to the trine with his Jupiter, which perfects or peaks on 16/17th February, closer to the time of the awards.  Barbra at the time had Uranus sextile her Mars, Mars sextile her Jupiter, and Chiron sextile her Uranus, which produce an air of excitement (probably in her life unconnected with the incident).

The Oscars: 91st Academy Awards

These take place on Sunday, 24th February, and the transits are:-

For Richard, Jupiter square exactly his natal Jupiter – high energy, super excitement.  Uranus sextile his natal Mars (more excitement).  Neptune sextile his Mercury (a sensitive nervous system, registering emotion); and Pluto still very close to the trine with his Jupiter (just a week after its peak).

For Melissa, Pluto trine exactly her natal Saturn (profound acknowledgement of hard work), and Uranus trine her Sun by 3 degrees (some success).

When the dust has settled on the Oscars, Grant has another project to look forward to, his forthcoming appearance in Star Wars: Episode IX.  But he will surely look back on this period as one of the highlights of his life.


We started this morning with a square between Venus and Chiron, a possible emotional wrangle in an otherwise unblemished week astrologically.  You may have had to examine your emotional or financial history in the early hours, for clues to any current dilemmas or overdue issues.  The question “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” might have come up…If you didn’t manage to come up with a resolution or conclusion, then it might be best to let the subconscious mind work on it for the time being, and enjoy the rest of the week.

A very forgiving, upbeat aspect occurs this evening, in the form of Mercury sextile Jupiter.  It’s a good week generally, but particularly for Geminis and Virgos, as their ruling planet Mercury makes favourable connections with some of the other planets.  So this evening favours business deals, travel and travel plans, and learning of all kinds.  New and upbeat ways of looking at things can start the week as you mean to go on, and on a favourable footing.

:Later still, Venus enters Capricorn, bringing a slightly more sober take on relationships.  But the upside of Venus in Capricorn is more commitment, loyalty and realism.  Thoughts may turn to the care of the elderly within the family circle.

A fresh New Moon at 15 degrees Aquarius awaits us tomorrow (4th February), and the chance of a new start and new vision.  Aquarius is community minded, sees the injustices in society and wants to bring about beneficial change.  So any projects you have in your mind or are involved with along such lines receive a boost at this time.  It’s a good time to look to the future.

A nod to the Chinese New Year on Tuesday (5th), which will be the Year of the Earth Pig.  Wishing you all a Happy Year of the Pig, whatever your Chinese animal sign, and the hope that people will take to heart the advice that eating less meat  will help the planet.  Any experts on the Year of the Pig would be welcome to add their comments below.

The continued conviviality between the planets bestows a superb sextile between the Sun and Jupiter on Friday (8th).  Whatever your enterprise, good fortune may smile on it.  It brings a cheery, if not laughter-filled vibration to the day.  It favours international relations (there may be handshakes with Michel Barnier and Donald Tusk in Brussels if we’re very lucky).  Boundless optimism will win the day.

The same day provides us with yet another sextile, that between Mercury and Mars.  That helps our minds and bodies work in sync and makes communication more sprightly.  It also adds excitement to the previous sextile, making the whole day quite dynamic.  It’s not a day for sitting with your feet up – make the most of opportunities which present themselves.

And the excitement doesn’t abate on Saturday, it just goes on, with another sextile, between Mercury and Uranus, representing great mental activity and intuition combining with the rational mind to good effect.  This is helpful for repairing or upgrading technology, and for receiving and implementing new and futuristic ideas.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – emotional need for healing, enterprising communication, and more settling in relationships
  • Tomorrow – new beginnings
  • Tuesday – Chinese New Year
  • Friday – luck and success, brisk and efficient activity
  • Saturday – brilliant minds