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Grin and Bear It, Juice (UK), Issue 21 November 2003
Transcribed by Gizmo LittleWing, scan from Helen

[On the cover is a picture of Orlando in close-up looking suitably moody. Inside, above the article, there is one of him and Kiera Knightley at a POTC premiere, and beside the text is one of just him smiling slightly apologetically in his black sweatshirt and necklaces.]

As Orlando Bloom hits the big time, he may look out of place among Hollywood's forced smiles. By Sarah Donaldson

Here, at last, is a young British actor to take on the new generation of American stars, and Orlando Bloom's very Britishness seems to be key. One of his many fansites is devoted to his "gentle smile", and his thoughtful, shy looks are an antidote to brash celebrity. When Hollywood stars flash their rows of bleached veneer, we mere mortals can simply squint in the glare. But when Orlando offers us his apologetic grin, we want to give him a big, confidence-boosting hug.

Indeed the 26-year-old is, if we are to believe the Internet, the most adored actor in the world. More than 1.6million websites currently mention his name, compared with 1.4m for Johnny Depp, 1.5m for Tim Cruise and paltry 760,00 for Leonardo DiCaprio. His smitten fans call him "Orlie the hottie". A tabloid kiss-and-tell-er preferred "greatest love god on the planet".

Bloom's British modesty reflects a whimsical middle-class upbringing in deepest Kent, indulging in horse riding and Bible and poetry-reading. At 16, he left Canterbury for drama college in London.

His career got off to a stuttering start with an E in theatre studies A-Level, a role in Casualty and a brush with death when he fell three storeys and broke his back. But a role as a rent-boy in Wilde caught the eye of Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson, and Bloom found himself on the film's New Zealand set two days before his graduation.

His Rings role, as Elvin good-guy Legolas, brought Bloom overnight success, which he continued as swashbuckling good guy Will in Pirates of the Caribbean. Next summer, he will move away from what he calls "wholesome" roles, as a womanising baddie in Homeric blockbuster Troy. "I don't want to be a pretty boy", says the reluctant heartthrob. Hate to say it Orlando, but your genes- and that smile- have other ideas.