May 26, 2016  

Sam Claflin Ditched Soccer Hopes for Acting

May 3, 2011 (3:18 pm) GMT
Rookie actor Sam Claflin is still stunned he was chosen to replace Orlando Bloom in the next 'Pirates of the Caribbean' movie - because he always dreamed of a career as a soccer player.

was a keen footballer in his youth and planned to sign up for English Premier League club Norwich City, but his sporting career was cut short when he suffered a broken ankle.

Sam Claflin's mother suggested he tried his hand at acting instead and he won roles in several minor British TV shows - and less than two years later he's been plucked from obscurity to star as 's new sidekick in "".

Claflin tells Empire magazine, "I realised I was too weak to play football at an adult level. As I was a drama queen on the pitch, my mum said, 'You should try acting on stage.'... The biggest challenge (on the Pirates of the Caribbean set) has been staying focused. You have to pinch yourself, say, 'I am working... but look at that cave!'"

quit the swashbuckling franchise after 2007's "" to concentrate on more theatre work.

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