Hugh – who has five siblings - said: “I would love to say I was Billy Elliot, but I wasn’t. My dad was like, ‘Terrific,’ but my brother was like, ‘Ah, you poof!’ I was only about 10 or 11, but I remember thinking that this is not a good thing.”
Although his brother initially put him off from pursuing his dream, it was the same sibling who eventually ended up inspiring him to re-connect with acting when he was 18 after having his negative attitude changed by a performance of the musical ‘42nd Street’.
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Speaking to gay and lesbian news website Xtra.ca, the Hollywood hunk explained: “My brother came up to me and said, ‘Man, I want to apologise. I’m such an idiot … you should be up there doing that. It was really a kind of sweet thing for him to say. I joined up the next day.”
It was when he was at university studying to be a journalist that Hugh finally realised he had no choice other than to become an actor when a he took some drama classes which led him to being cast as the lead in a production of Vaclav Havel’s ‘The Memorandum’.
He said: “I was studying to be a journalist, but in the last semester I had to make up two units. Our university had this drama class, and the teacher was famous for just having to turn up to pass … I got the lead (in ‘The Memorandum’) and I begged my teacher. I said, ‘I’m in my finals; I can’t do this play. But I loved it.
“Have you ever had that feeling where you’ve found your people, your tribe? In that week I felt more at home with those people than I did in the entire three years at university.”