X-Men star Hugh Jackman laughingly admits Bognor Regis didn’t live up to his teenage expectations of seaside England.
In a radio interview to be broadcast today on the XFM Breakfast Show with Jon Holmes, the Aussie-born Hollywood A-lister discloses he had a Bognor granny but the town failed to impress when he visited as an 18-year-old.
“I grew up knowing a seaside granny, and I had this great vision of my granny and the beach... and I go to Bognor,” he said.
“Technically seaside, but really. March, April Bognor!”
Sydney-born Jackman, aged 46, who was Oscar-nominated for his part in the film version of Les Misérables, is dubbed the King of Bognor by the presenter during the radio clip.
Jackman, whose other films include Van Helsing, The Prestige and Australia, recalls: “When I came over when I was 18, my grandma, who I had not spent much time with, she was... I don’t know if she was even happy that I was there.
“She seemed a little grumpy about me being there, and we got off to a rocky start. And then I said ‘Do you want to watch Neighbours?’ She said ‘Ha! Neighbours! I love Neighbours!’ We watched it twice a day, and that was our bonding point. And I was six months ahead because I was from Australia.
“It was 8.30am: ‘Neighbours is on in half an hour! Come on, Hugh, get up!’ And I was saying ‘We watched it yesterday! It’s exactly the same as yesterday!”
Jackman adds: “(Bognor) was famous for that king. The king, some king, whatever, turned up in his carriage and he was asleep. He said ‘Where I am?’ and they said “Bognor”, and he said “Bognor, bl**dy Bognor!’”