LUKE Perry previously told how he hated being a “teen idol” at the height of his Beverly Hills, 90210 fame.
The actor died in hospital on Monday aged 52 after suffering a massive stroke, prompting a huge outpouring of grief from fans who adored him in the high school drama and Riverdale.
Rex Features Luke Perry said aged 25 that he hated being known as a ‘teen idol’
Luke skyrocketed to fame in 1990 aged just 23 years old after being cast as heart breaker Dylan McKay.
The show attracted him millions of teenage fans but he hated the moniker that came with his new pin-up status.
Speaking to PEOPLE in 1991 at the age of 25, Luke hit back at the interviewer when they labelled him a “teen idol”.
He replied: “Man, I hate those two f***ing words!”
AP:Associated Press Luke was starring in Riverdale when he died
Kobal Collection – Rex Features Ian Ziering, Jennie Garth, Tori Spelling, Brian Austin Green, Gabrielle Carteris, Jason Priestley, Shannen Doherty, Luke Perry in Beverly Hills 90210 – 1990-2000
The Ohio-born star received 2,000 fan letters every week and was mobbed everywhere he’d go in Los Angeles and New York by screaming girls.
However he said the lifestyle made him feel uncomfortable, and friends and family knew him better than as a stereotypical star.
He said: “This (fandom) s**t makes you crazy once in a while. But all of that is just fantasy.
“This is reality (points to the ground.)
Kobal Collection – Rex Features Luke Perry played Dylan McKay in Beverly Hills
Kobal Collection – Rex Features Luke with Shannen Doherty, in 90210
“I’m a simple guy. Look around. I don’t need a whole lot.”
He added: “Some people would say that I’m not an actor, simply because I don’t own a Harley-Davidson and I’ve never been to a poetry reading. That s**t isn’t what I’m about.”
Luke moved to LA after high school and worked as a labourer. He said he was rejected 216 times at auditions around the city before landing a role in a sitcom in New York in ABC soap Loving.
He was then plucked from relative obscurity to become TV’s hottest heartbreaker.
Reuters Luke Perry portrays a Los Angeles Police officer in the Riot, 1992
AP:Associated Press Luke starred in ABC soap Loving before being cast in Beverley Hills, 90210
Speaking about that transition, from growing up in Ohio to world-wide fame in LA, he said: “S**t I was laying asphalt the week before I got Beverly Hills, 90210. I’ll do whatever it takes to pay the rent ..
“The people (in Ohio) they are good people. When they say, ‘Thank you,’ they mean it. A lot of people say nice things to me out here because they’re getting paid to.”
Luke’s mother and father divorced when he was six years old and his died of a heart attack in 1980.
The father and son never reconciled: “I used to be very bitter about it, but I’m not now. It’s not worth my time.
“I don’t like anybody who hurts my mom … There was definitely a clash of personalities.”
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Nineties hearthrob Luke passed away this morning at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank surrounded by his family – including Jack and Sophie and fiance Wendy Madison Bauer.
His rep said: “Actor Luke Perry, 52, passed away today after suffering a massive stroke. The family appreciates the outpouring of support and prayers that have been extended to Luke from around the world, and respectfully request privacy in this time of great mourning. No further details will be released at this time.”