You will probably have no problem recognising the man in this picture. He is now indisputably one of Hollywood’s biggest actors, but before he rose to fame Tom Hardy was just an actor of humble beginnings, living in London.  Tom’s steady rise to fame began after being cast in the WW2 miniseries Band of Brothers (2001), where he subsequently decided to drop his studies at Drama Centre in London. However, his early acting career was blighted by drug and alcohol issues, and he decided to admit himself into rehab after starring as villain Shinzon in Star Trek: nemesis (2002).

Although Tom Hardy has had a large number of movie roles, in our opinion, some of his greatest acting shines through in his television roles. Indeed, Tom Hardy gained huge recognition as an actor after starring as Stuart Shorter in the BBC adaptation of Alexander Masters’ bestselling biography Stuart: A Life Backwards (2007). Tom Hardy stunned audiences with his portrayal of Stuart Shorter, an occasionally violent homeless man suffering from muscular dystrophy and drug addiction.  His acting was so convincing that he received a BAFTA nomination. However, it is clear to all that the reason Tom Hardy’s acting is so striking is because he does not just simply “act”: he embodies every flaw of the character, and can sometimes even be quite frightening.

One of his most incredible transformations to date was his role as Charles Bronson “the most violent prisoner in Britain” in indie film Bronson (2008), directed by Nicolas Winding Refn. Charles Bronson was arrested for robbing a post office in 1974, in which he got away with just 26 pounds. He is still in prison to this date because he repeatedly had his sentence increased after attacking prison staff and taking them hostage. To look like Charles Bronson as much as possible Tom Hardy put on an enormous amount of weight and went through a gruelling exercise regime with the help of an ex- US Marine. He also wore Charles Bronson’s signature strongman moustache and was in regular contact with Charles Bronson so that he would gain as big an insight as possible into the crazed mind of the criminal. Tom Hardy’s portrayal was very unsettling and won him a British Independent Film Award for best actor.

Undoubtedly because he experienced his own hardships in his youth, Tom Hardy is quite the philanthropist: he is the patron for the charity “Flack”, which is a charity whose aim is to focus on homeless people’s potential rather than their problems and is also an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust (a charity which aims to help disadvantaged youth get into jobs, education and training. We’re very impressed with the journey Tom Hardy has been on and can’t wait to see what he does next.

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