Stars Who Have Lost and Gained Weight for Roles
Stars often go through amazing transformations for their roles; they may have their entire body painted as did Rebecca Romijn for her role in the “X-Men” movies, or they may wear prosthetics that make them virtually unrecognizable as did Nicole Kidman for her Oscar-winning role in “The Hours.”
Getting into top physical shape is also often needed for a role. Hilary Swank trained for months as a boxer for her role in “Million Dollar Baby,” and Linda Hamilton famously worked out for months as well to show off her toned and muscular arms in “Terminator 2.”
Gaining and losing weight is also part of getting ready for movie roles, depending upon the character an actor is portraying. Charlize Theron is said to have put on some 20 pounds for her Oscar-winning role in “Monster,” and Renee Zellweger gained almost 30 pounds to play the title character in the “Bridget Jones” movies. Actor Hugh Jackman put on some 30 pounds of muscle for his role as the character Wolverine in the “X-Men” movies, and Mark Wahlberg is rumored to have gained the same for his role in “The Fighter.”
Actor Jared Leto gained 67 pounds to play John Lennon’s assassin Mark David Chapman in “Chapter 27.” Vincent D’Onofrio famously gained some 70 pounds for his role of the out-of-shape recruit in “Full Metal Jacket,” and George Clooney gained 30 pounds for his role in “Syriana.” It’s said that Clooney was not happy about his weight gain as it caused a tear in his back and kept him from his basketball playing, motorcycle riding lifestyle.
Losing weight is also part of a role for an actor so they can better portray a character. Megastar Tom Hanks lost some 50 pounds for the filming of “Castaway,” playing a man trapped on a deserted island. Matt Damon is said to have done the same thing to play a heroin addict in “Courage Under Fire.” Beyonce lost some 20 pounds for her role in “Dreamgirls” so she would look more svelte on camera.
Some stars need to gain and then immediately lose weight, or vice versa, for various roles they’ve played. Russell Crowe is said to have gained 35 pounds for his role in “The Insider,” and then lost that immediately afterwards to bulk up and get toned for his role in “Gladiator.” Christian Bale famously lost some 65 pounds for his role in “The Machinist,” playing a man losing weight due to not sleeping for a year, and then put that weight and several more pounds back on as solid muscle for his role in “Batman Begins.”
Weight loss and gain is just another sign of a star’s dedication to their role. It’s often not healthy for the body and may cause long-term damage if not done under the supervision of a skilled trainer. The next time you see your favorite star and notice that they look a bit lighter or downright heavier, you may not be mistaken!