- Learned to tap dance at age 4 in order to correct pigeon toes.
- Played cello with a youth orchestra.
- Ran away to join a Budapest circus at age 17 in order to obtain his Equity Card. He stayed for six months, working with the jugglers and trapeze artists.
- Studied musical theater as a young man; appeared in the stage productions Cats, 42nd Street and Annie Get Your Gun before attending drama school.
- Acted with the Royal Shakespeare Company for a year and a half after drama school, appearing in such plays as Macbeth and The Duchess of Malfi.
- Worked an array of jobs before his acting career took off, including as an estate agent and a theatre usher.
- Underwent actual waterboarding (a form of torture) for a scene in the British spy series Spooks (known as MI-5 in the U.S.).
- Was named the Romantic Novelists' Association's 2009 Sexiest Thing on Two Legs, beating out such stars as Johnny Depp and Daniel Craig.