Ben Hardy: Hollywood isn't a big leap from EastEnders
Ben Hardy doesn't think Hollywood is that big of a "leap" from being in 'EastEnders'.
The 25-year-old actor quit the British soap - which is set in Walford, a fictional area in the East End of London - last year to embark on a movie career, landing a starring role in new comic book blockbuster 'X-Men: Apocalypse'.
Hardy is adamant life in Los Angeles isn't that much different from living in London.
He said: "Hollywood's not as glamorous as I thought. It's grungy. It's not too much of a leap from 'EastEnders'."
Hardy plays mutant Archangel in the film alongside the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, James McEvoy and Nicholas Hoult and Sophie Turner.
The hunk admits he had to go through a gruelling audition process to get cast in the part, but it was all worth it once he got the call saying the role was his.
In an interview with The Sun newspaper, he shared: "It was a long old process. It was tough going, so when I got the part it was a huge relief."
Hardy believes it was a topless shoot he did for gay magazine Attitude showing off his buff physique that brought him to the attention of Hollywood bosses.
He said: "I'm very thankful for that shoot because I feel that definitely helped me cross over to international waters."
Hardy - who comes from Dorset on the south coast of England - has been in a relationship with his girlfriend Katriona Perrett for six years and he admits as his fame as grown, the blonde beauty, also 25, has had to get used to her boyfriend receiving a lot of attention.
He said: "I didn't realise the impact it would have on my life ... It was weird at first but now she's used to it. If we're out having a meal and people are coming over to ask for pictures it isn't great."