Tom Hiddleston has been making headline this week after his sex scene in The Night Manager, not only that but he has a new film released this week too, High Rise, in anticipation of that we thought we’d share some facts about the actor you might not know.
Thomas William Hiddleston was born in Westminster, London and grew up in Wimbledon and Oxford.
As a boy he attended Dragon School and Eton College, before heading to Pembroke College at the University of Cambridge and graduating from Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in 2005. He graduated from Pembroke College with a Double First in Classics. Hiddleston attended Eton at the same time as Prince William and Eddie Redmayne.
Hiddleston played rugby at Cambridge University but gave it up to pursue his love of acting.
During his childhood, he and his sisters and cousins would put on performances for the rest of the family, including a “Cinderella” adaptation.
Tom took up dancing as a teen to attract girls, and have you seen him move?!
Excepting his native English, Hiddleston can speak nine languages to varying degrees of fluency. These are French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, German, Korean, Mandarin, Greek and Latin.
Hiddleston’s mum is a former stage manager. His father is a scientist and was the director of a pharmaceutical company.
His great-great-grandfather was Sir Edmund Vestey, 1st Baronet, an English importer who was created a Baronet for supplying food to British troops during the First World War.
Tom has two sisters. In fact, he starred alongside his sister Emma Hiddleston in the film ironically titled Unrelated. His other sister, Sarah, is a journalist in India.
Tom started acting to help cope with his parents’ divorce, speaking once he said about the divorce: “I like to think it made me more compassionate in my understand of human frailty.”
Hiddleston began to question if he would ever breakout as an actor. He’s admitted that his father even tried to persuade the highly-educated Hiddleston to be his “own man” rather than merely “pretending to be someone else.”
He landed his first TV role, the Lord in “The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby”, after a talent agency saw him in a stage production of “A Streetcar named Desire”.
Prior to hitting the big time in Kenneth Branagh’s Wallander, he’d made a few blink and you’ll miss it TV appearances. His on-screen debut was playing a Lord in the TV movie The Life of Nicholas Nickleby, based on the novel by Charles Dickens. He also made an appearance as an ill-fated rock climber in an episode of Casualty in 2007, which you can watch below.
Before his star-turn as Loki, Hiddleston screen-tested for the role of Thor, even putting on 20 pounds of muscle, but director Kenneth Branagh felt he was more suitable for the role of the Loki.
At Comic-Con 2013 in San Diego, Tom appeared on stage as Loki, calling out the fans who waited in infamously long lines: “Humanity, look how far you’ve fallen. Lining up in the sweltering heat for hours. Huddling together in the dark like beasts!”
He credits Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” as the primary inspiration for his vampire character in Jim Jarmusch’s “Only Lovers Left Alive.”
His speciality seems to be Shakespeare, having starred as Prince Hal in the BBC’s Hollow Crown series. Prior to this, he starred in a number of Shakespeare plays such as Othello and Coriolanus. He won the Ian Charleston Award Third Prize for his role in the former. He has also won an Olivier Award for his role in Cymbeline. He can even recite “Hamlet” on demand.
He won “Best Newcomer” at the Laurence Olivier Awards in 2008, an esteemed honor that recognizes the best in London theatre.
Hiddleston was ranked at No. 2 on Empire’s The 100 Sexiest Movie Stars list in 2013.
Hiddleston’s favorite film is “Heat,” he even re-enacted a scene from the film, doing both Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, in front of Bob himself on The Graham Norton Show.
In fact, he’s pretty brilliant at impressions in general and often does them, he does a great impression of Shere Khan from “The Jungle Book.”
Hiddleston has said that if not for acting, he would have been a cowboy. If he had a horse, he’d name it “Balthazaar.”
Despite starring as Loki in Marvel movies, he admits his favourite superhero is Superman. In his mind, Christopher Reeve was the first real superhero.
In January 2013, he travelled with UNICEF UK to Guinea, West Africa, to visit children, families, and communities. He continues to remain involved with the organization.
Jameson on the rocks is Hiddleston’s go-to drink. When asked about his favourite alcohol, Hiddleston told GQ UK, “When the nights draw in it’s nice to come home, tinkle a few ice cubes in a tumbler, pour a little Jameson in and watch a movie.”
Despite his love of swimming in the sea, Hiddleston is terrified of sharks, he told Metro: “I love swimming in the sea and don’t think about sharks until I’m the furthest person out from the shoreline, then the John Williams Jaws theme starts in my head.”
Next time Tom Hiddleston is over for tea, be sure to serve him Earl Grey with a splash of milk – it’s his favourite.
He’s a feminist: “I believe in the strength and intelligence and sensitivity of women,” he told Elle U.K. “My mother, my sisters [they] are strong. My mum is a strong woman, and I love her for it.”
High Rise is released in cinemas March 18