War Horse Star Reunion with Duke

Published in the Oxford Times, 9 January 2012

Tom Hiddleston has revealed how the Duke of Cambridge recognised him from their school days as they were reunited on the red carpet at the UK premiere of War Horse.

The 30-year-old, who plays Captain Nicholls in Steven Spielberg’s First World War epic, studied at Eton College, like William.

Tom said that the royal did recognise him, but added: "He was on show as much as anyone else was so it’s not like we could have a school reunion or anything. He was very kind and very generous."

The actor – who also starred in The Deep Blue Sea and Thor – did not reveal if the Duke, who was in the year below, remembered the time he called out his entire football team.

"The senior boys used to referee the junior boys’ football matches. I remember contesting a goal as a referee and his entire team, including him, coming up and protesting that I had made a mistake," he recalled.

"And I blew the whistle and said, ‘My decision still stands’."

Tom, who was joined by co-stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Emily Watson, David Thewlis, newcomer Jeremy Irvine and the Oscar-winning director at the premiere, said the Duke was not singled out for any special treatment at school.

"The great thing about where I was at school was that he was treated like any other schoolboy, as much for his and everyone’s own protection and sanity. It’d be sort of crazy if he was walking around feeling more special than anybody else."