Dedicated to their art: Actors who went above and beyond

We take a look at the actors so committed to their work that they made drastic changes to their bodies. Actors include Christian Bale and Charlize Theron

Whilst watching Speed Racer we spied a masked Matthew Fox was trying to hide amongst the immense CGI. Now, we don’t know if you’ve seen the recent picture from Alex Cross on your travels, but Dr. Jack has changed a bit since the good old days of Lost.

We feel we should put a disclaimer here, but I’ll throw caution to the wind and just spring it on you.

We’re not going to lie – when we first saw this we thought it looked a bit like Robert Carlyle had gone overboard at LA Fitness. Imagine our shock when we found out it was Charlie from Party of Five, with what looks like 1% body fat.

Anyway, once we had recovered from the sugar rush that is Speed Racer, we had a thought about all those other thespians that go to extraordinary lengths for the sake of their art. So, our top five actor dedicated to their art is as follows…

  1. 5

    Jared Leto

    The former My So Called Life actor and now rock god bulked up in 2007 to play Mark David Chapman. For Chapter 27 he gained a reported 67 pounds and became almost unrecognisable to fans.

  2. 4

    Tom Hanks

    In 2000, once we’d all survived the millennium bug, we were watching Tom Hanks and his faithful sidekick Wilson in Cast Away. Tom gained 50 pounds and then lost it all to play Chuck Noland in the Robert Zemeckis film. He was awarded with a Golden Globe for his trouble. Wilson has been unavailable for comment.

  3. 3

    Robert De Niro

    Raging Bull was released in 1980 and gave Robert De Niro his only Oscar for Best Actor. He was reported to have gained 60 pounds in 4 months to play the boxer Jake La Motta once his career in the ring was over. Raging Bull 2 is apparently in pre production, with Mojean Aria and William Forsythe playing the differing ages of La Motta.

  4. 2

    Charlize Theron

    The similarity between Charlize Theron and serial killer Aileen Wuornos still baffles us to this day. How Charlize managed to transform herself into one of America’s most notorious female killers is so unbelievable it almost put her at the top of the list. We're pretty sure we weren't the only ones with mouths agape in 2003 when the first pictures were released for Monster. Her portrayal earned her a Best Actress Oscar and, even now, is thought by many to be her greatest performance.

  5. 1

    Christian Bale

    Charlize would have made it, if it wasn’t for that pesky Batman. Christian Bale took dedication to new limits in 2004’s The Machinist, when he lost an unimaginable 62 pounds in four months to play insomniac Trevor Reznik. Bale allegedly consumed less than 250 calories per day to shift the weight, only to have to bulk up rapidly for the following year’s blockbuster Batman Begins.

Special mentions to Linda Hamilton for her warrior woman Sarah Connor in the brilliant Terminator 2 and Meg Ryan for selflessly enhancing her lips for the sake of the thriller In the Cut.

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