He acted throughout his school days, beginning at a pre-prep school in Notting Hill where he starred as Joseph in the nativity play and earned his first, intoxicating laugh from the crowd when he shoved the girl playing Mary off the stage. ‘I didn’t really understand it, and I wasn’t intending to play to the house,’ he says. ‘I was just furious about how self-indulgent she was being.’ From there he went on to a boarding school in Sussex, where the teachers urged him on to the stage, partly as a form of behaviour management. ‘I think it was almost like a control thing, to repress the tearaway in me,’ he says. ‘I was pretty naughty, I got into fights, it was all a bit Just William.