The 47-year-old actor insists he didn`t get into Hollywood for the fame and admits it was difficult to adjust to his newfound celebrity status when he first rose to notoriety in 1990 with ITV drama `Chancer`.
Clive told the Mail on Sunday`s Live magazine: "I never wanted to be a movie star. And I didn`t become an actor to become famous. I genuinely didn`t. It was always theatre for me.
"`Chancer` was a baptism of fire. It`s very weird to go from obscurity to suddenly being in newspapers.
"When somebody is hot, everyone wants a piece of it. If you explode onto the scene at a very young age, there are so many people pulling you in different directions.
"It takes time to recalibrate and see what`s important."
The down-to-earth `Closer` star - who has worked with an impressive list of A-list leading ladies including Keira Knightley, Angelina Jolie and Nicole Kidman - maintains that he doesn`t get star-struck by famous actors, only his sporting heroes.
The football fanatic mused: "I never think of meeting actors. I think of the times I`ve met footballers."
He added that the biggest star of all in his eyes is rock legend David Bowie, who he has met several times.
Clive said: "I got very tongue-tied. It`s like meeting somebody that you feel you`ve known for so long - it`s difficult.
"I often think he inspired me to get into acting as much as any actor."