Compiled by: Jack Foley
ORLANDO Bloom has come a long way fast. Three years ago, he was
a little known British actor, with a small part in the film Wilde
to his name; yet now, he is rapidly earning a place for himself
on the Hollywood A-list, following roles in some of the biggest
In 2001, Bloom emerged as one of the stars of Ridley Scotts
gripping military drama, Black
Hawk Down, while also winning the hearts of many as Legolas,
in the Lord
of the Rings trilogy.
And this Summer, he is being compared with a young Errol Flynn,
for his swashbuckling performance alongside Johnny Depp, in Box
Office hit, Pirates of the Caribbean - a role which has merely
served to confirm his status as one of Hollywoods brightest
Speaking at a London press conference for the latter movie, held
at the Dorchester Hotel, Bloom attributed much of his success
to a certain amount of luck, and timing.
"Its opportunity as well, isnt it," he
told me. "Having trained at school, I know that I was in
a class of incredibly talented actors and actresses, its
just whether or not they get to the opportunity to show it.
"Certainly, the opportunities for both of us [co-star, Keira
Knightley] came early on and getting it such early doors means
you can move from there."
And Bloom is certainly moving on, with a starring role alongside
Brad Pitt and Eric Bana, in the epic Troy, next up for the charming
But for the moment, he is content to talk about his role in Gore
Verbinskis swashbuckler, which has confounded the critics,
and the curse surrounding the pirate movie genre,
to become one of the most successful blockbusters of the year.
Bloom stars as Will Turner, an aspiring swordsmith, who is forced
to team up with Depps rogue sailor to rescue a childhood
sweetheart from the clutches of a cursed group of pirates.
Yet he almost had to pass on the part, due to filming commitments
on another, smaller project.
"Initially, I was signed up to do the Calcium Kid, a small
British film, which was being directed by a friend, so Id
made a commitment to him and I didnt want to let him down,"
"So when I got the script for Pirates of the Caribbean,
I sort of didnt want to tempt myself with the idea of getting
behind something that I didnt think I was going to be able
"But I was in Australia at the time, working on Ned Kelly,
and Geoffrey Rush was really excited about going on to do Pirates,
and was talking about it, and felt there was a great role in this
and told me to just read it, if nothing else.
"Jerry Bruckheimer [who serves as producer] had mentioned
this to me while we were in Japan on a press junket one time,
even as far back as Black
Hawk Down, but because of the other obligation, I just didnt
want to let him down.
"But Im very grateful and thankful to say that it
did work out, because it couldnt have been a more fun experience."
It is another example of the luck which has surrounded much of
Blooms career, particularly given that there were fears
the star would not be able to walk again, following an accident
while studying at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Bloom fell three stories from a rooftop terrace, and broke his
back, prompting very real fears that he would be permanently paralysed.
But he quickly recovered and has even attributed the experience
to helping him secure the roll in Black
Hawk Down, in which he played a soldier who broke his back
in a fall.
The luck element was even apparent when being cast as Legolas
in Lord of the Rings, given that he had initially auditioned for
the role of Faramir.
Yet he has grasped his opportunities and appears genuinely keen
to learn from the opportunity to work with some of the most established
stars in the industry.
His role in Pirates of the Caribbean, for instance, has helped
him to realise another ambition
that of working alongside
"Johnnys been a bit of a guideline for me really,
as a young actor, and probably every one in my generation,"
he said, paying tribute to the star for the way in which he dared
to create such an eccentric character as Jack Sparrow - Blooms
"His character didnt really read like that on the
page, not to me anyway; not that sort of drunken sea-legged, Keith
Richards number that he pulled out from the black corners of his
"But hes so courageous as an actor. I mean if you
learn anything, and this goes for Geoffrey Rush, who is an award-winning
actor, it just seemed like he had freedom tattooed across his
forehead with that hat.
"I just think that, as a young actor, I felt really privileged
to see how he goes about creating a character, and was really
taken with the way he just puts himself out there, because it
could quite easily not have worked
but it never sort of
doesnt; it always works with Johnny."
It is this same sort of bravery that Bloom will now be hoping
to use in furthering his own career, although with several big
projects already on the horizon (not to mention the concluding
part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy this December), it seems
unlikely that the actor will be walking the plank just yet in
terms of his career.
In fact, with the Jolly Roger riding high among this years
blockbusters, there is already talk of a Pirates of the Caribbean
sequel, with Bruckheimer announcing his intention to cast the
same team at the same London press conference.