Original INCREDIBLE HULK star Lou Ferrigno took positive action when he suffered deafness at a young age - it made him determined to succeed.

The 51-year old actor is now back into the limelight as Ang Lee's version of the MARVEL character smashes box office records - and Ferrigno attributes his success playing the famous green character in the original TV series to the obstacles he had to overcome as a youngster.

He explains, "I was a very shy little boy. I lost a lost my hearing through an ear infection when I was young and I wanted to build up my confidence. So when I was 12 I got into bodybuilding.

"I couldn't speak very well because of my deafness and some people thought this was why I didn't speak in the Hulk but he isn't meant to say anything. He just grunts, groans and roars.

"If I hadn't lost my hearing I wouldn't be where I am now. It forced me to maximise my potential."

24/06/2003 13:38