West ran away to join circus

The actor left the prestigious Eton College boarding school in England when he was 18 to herd cattle in Argentina.

His career path then took an even stranger turn – he decided to take a five-month break from acting to become an acrobat with the Argentinian travelling troupe De La Guarda.

West recalls, “I’d seen the circus perform in London and I loved the show they put on. It was a kind of rave-club circus where the performers swung around on ropes and ran around the walls. I’d always liked physical theatre, but I’d never been any good at it. But I fancied having a go at this.

But West struggled with the physical demands of the circus, and was glad to return to his original acting ambitions.

He adds, “After five auditions, I was accepted. I was out of my depth really. All the other performers were dancers or athletes. I struggled with it, but I gave it my best.

“One of my moves involved jumping off a very high pole, swinging over the audience, picking someone out of the crowd and flying up again. It was a little crazy at times.”.