Hollywood doesn’t stop at just great acting these days. Actors and actresses now have to live and breathe their roles if they want to be taken seriously, or to the Oscars.
Recent years have seen a number of Hollywood heavyweights shrink and expand for roles that required a specific physique, and these thespians have risked their health and lifestyle paying homage to their craft.
5 actors who changed their physique for films
Bradley Cooper gained 18kg for American Sniper
Bradley bulked up to 102kg so he could accurately portray Chris Kyle. His daily regimen included multiple intense workouts and he consumed more than 5 000 calories a day. He did this for 10 weeks before he felt comfortable enough to play the role.
Natalie Portman dropped 9kg to play a ballerina in Black Swan
Portman was on a punishing diet of carrots and almonds, and exercised five to eight hours a day for a year to slim her already trim figure down for this role; the diminutive actress even swam a mile a day.
Christian Bale dropped 27kg for his role in The Machinist
After Christian’s weight plummeted to 55kg through existing only on apples, coffee and water for his role as insomniac Trevor Reznik in The Machinist, the six-foot actor swiftly bulked up again in just six weeks to play the Caped Crusader in Batman Begins by gorging on pizza and ice cream.
Charlize Theron gained 14kg for Monster
South Africa’s Charlize gorged on junk food and indulged in doughnuts to help her beef up for her challenging role. However, Theron is a salty girl and fell back on potato chips to bulk up. The South African gained 14kg and an Oscar when she played serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster.
Jake Gyllenhaal gains 6kg of muscle for Southpaw
To get into shape for his role in Southpaw, Jake Gyllenhaal underwent a gruelling training routine, working out six hours a day, while completing 1 000 sit-ups in the morning, and 1 000 sit-ups before bed, not to mention an eight-mile run five times a week. Gyllenhaal had to work even harder to get back into shape because he had just dropped approximately 14kg to play freelance crime reporter Lou, who stumbles upon the dangerous underworld of Los Angeles in Nightcrawler.