Movie stars are often called upon to transform their physiques in order to play particular parts. Christian Bale famously lost large amounts of weight in order to play the lead in The Machinist; Elle MacPherson gained weight for her role in Sirens; and Rene Zellweger plumped in order to play the chubby protagonist in Bridget Jones’ Diary.
Many stars subject themselves to many months of grueling training so that they are thin enough or even fat enough for their roles.
Most recently both Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis had to shed 20 pounds, enduring a punishingly limited calorie intake and extreme exercise plan to develop the super-skinny, sinewy bodies typical of professional dancers for their roles in Black Swan.
Now the director of the next superhero film Wolverine has ordered protagonist Hugh Jackman to eat an additional 6000 calories a day so that he is bulky enough to play the role.
“It’s 6,000 calories a day. It’s rough,” the Australian actor told the Los Angeles Times about the preparation for the role, which also includes an intense fitness regime.
“Right now, I’m at 210 [15st],” he says, already 20lbs heavier than he was when he played the part of Wolverine in the 2009 movie X Men Origins: Wolverine.
“I don’t know how much I want to give away about it, but Darren said with the last one, ‘Hey you looked great, but you’re so tall that in those long shots you looked kind of like Clint Eastwood, and that’s not Wolverine,’” he added.
“He said that Wolverine, in the comics, is powerful, stocky…he’s short and thick. So he said, ‘I want you to go there, get bigger.’”
Jackman joked: “If I have a massive heart attack, well, you tell everyone what I was going for.”
The movie is scheduled for release in 2012.