An actor's job is harder than it looks. It's not all Us Weekly covers and award show after parties at Elton John's house. Some of the most memorable characters in film history have been played by actors who have done a lot of very real, very hard work on their bodies before the camera even started rolling. Moreover, many of these actors go to both ends of the extreme, not only losing weight, but adding bulk of fat or muscle as well. This list includes actors who have made the biggest changes to their bodies from film to film.
What do you think about so much fluctuation in weight just for movie roles? Is it worth the potential damage to the actors' metabolism and organs?
Renée Zellweger put on 30 lbs. for her lead role in Bridget Jones's Diary (2001), going from a size 2 to a size 14. She quickly lost the weight and shrunk down to a size 0 to play the role of Roxie Hart in Chicago, only to gain the weight back to reprise the character of Bridget Jones in the 2004 sequel.
- Age: 51
- Birthplace: Katy, Texas, USA
- Alternative Name: Renée Zellweger
Matt Damon reportedly lost almost 40 lbs. in less than 100 days for his role as a soldier addicted to opiates in Courage Under Fire (1996). The weight loss caused so much stress on his adrenal gland that he took medication to correct it for more than a year after filming.
For The Informant (2009), he packed on 30 lbs. via junk food to play a corporate whistleblower.
He then bulked up with solid muscle for his role in Elysium (2013).
- Age: 49
- Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States of America
- Alternative Name: Matt Damon
Russell Crowe gained 50 lbs. to play whistleblower Jeffrey Wigand in The Insider (1999).
The next year, he dropped a ton of weight and built muscle to play Roman general Maximus in Gladiator (2000).
He then gained 63 lbs. to play a CIA agent in Body of Lies (2008).
- Age: 56
- Birthplace: Wellington, New Zealand
Soon after, he gained 50 lbs. for Ten Years, weighing in at around 275 lbs.
He once again bulked up with muscle and lost 60 lbs. for Guardians of the Galaxy (2014).
- Age: 41
- Birthplace: Virginia, Minnesota, United States of America