Out actor Luke Evans was named UK LGBT glossy Attitude's Man of the Year.

In an accompanying interview with the magazine, Evans, 41, responded to claims he hid his sexuality to further his acting career.

Evans is best known for playing Owen Shaw in Fast & Furious 6, Bard the Bowman in The Hobbit, and Gaston in Disney's live-action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast.

Evans said that he was bullied as a child and left his hometown of Pontypool, Wales at 16.

“I didn't have a good school life. I was bullied very badly. I was an only child. There were a lot of bullies in my school, and I was an easy target,” he said.

“I just knew that I was different. Well, I knew I was different in so many ways because I was brought up as a Jehovah's Witness. I was from a very happy, loving, calm, and non-aggressive family.”

“I needed to find my identity, and I needed to be independent of my family, find my voice and be a happy gay teenager,” he said of leaving for London at age 16.

Evans also responded to claims that keeping his personal life private was a way to hide his sexuality to advance his career.

“It was the last thing I had, because everything else I’ve given to the world,” Evans said. “My career was public, I was photographed, and all that stuff. My personal life just became the last thing that I had. Also, what was strange was that when people did find out that I was gay, there was a lot of articles and stuff written saying that I was hiding it, and I wasn’t.”

“I just wanted to get online and I wanted to pick up the phone and say, ‘Do you realize I left home at 16 because I was gay?’ I went into the world as a kid, because I had to. I am proud and happy, and I’ve lived a very big life that I’m super happy with. And I’ve never been ashamed. And now all of a sudden I was being treated in this way and it was a scary moment because I was, like, oh God, this is horrible. This is not true. None of this is true.”

Evans added that being gay shouldn't limit a person's career.

“You can have any career you want and nothing should dictate what you do because of your sexuality,” he said.