Exclusive: Tom Hardy says, “I got knocked out by Shia LaBeouf.”

Tom Hardy, who’s bulked up to play Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, confirmed to us that he got “knocked out” by Shia LaBeouf…

We’re not normally interested in celebrity tittle tattle here on Den Of Geek, but one recent story doing the rounds on Monday really caught our eye. According to several news outlets, Shia LaBeouf (he of Transformers fame) came to blows with actor Tom Hardy on the set of The Wettest County In The World.

In a lengthy interview with Details magazine, LaBeouf said he’d engaged in a tussle with Hardy, and that his opponent “never did that roughhouse stuff with me again.”

We recently met with Tom Hardy for a round table interview to promote the forthcoming Warrior, a film about two brothers who fight in a mixed martial arts tournament. We’ll be bringing the full transcript of that meeting nearer the movie’s release in September, but one thing we can share with you is that Hardy briefly mentioned his encounter with Mr LaBeouf (and this was before LaBeouf’s interview came to light).

“I got knocked out by Shia LaBeouf, actually,” Hardy said. “In Wettest County, apparently.”

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At this point, that the atmosphere in the room seemed rather unusual, as though no one involved quite knew whether Hardy was being serious or not. His use of the word ‘apparently’ would also suggest that he was winding us up. Nevertheless, Hardy persisted with his version of what happened.

“[It was] behind the scenes,” he said, before being almost drowned out by incredulous laughter, both from me and my fellow hacks, and the row of publicists sitting a short distance behind us. “No, he did,” Hardy continued. “He knocked me out sparko. Out cold. He’s a bad, bad boy. He is. He’s quite intimidating as well. He’s a scary dude.”

When someone understandably asked Hardy how the fight started, Hardy was less clear.

“He just attacked me,” Hardy said, provoking more laughter. “He was drinking moonshine. I was wearing a cardigan, and er, went down. I woke up in Pnut’s arms.”

To clarify, Pnut (pronounced Peanut) is Hardy’s personal trainer. The actor continued, “He was concerned for me. I was like, ‘What was that? It was lightning fast.'” And he said, ‘That was Shia.’ I said, ‘Fuckin’ hell. Can we go home now?’ ‘No, we’ve still got three weeks to finish.'”

Now, if you’ve seen Hardy’s work in Bronson, or the trailer for Warrior, you’ll know that he’s a fairly well built chap. Is it likely that LaBeouf (who is, shall we say, rather less well built) really knocked out him out? It’s certainly the story that Hardy’s going with, even if the way he related it suggested that he had his tongue firmly in his cheek.

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