At this point Christian Bale is pretty well known for his crazy diet stunts, as he's gone from one extreme of physique to another more times than any other actor. The strenuous workout routines and insane dieting that actors sometimes put themselves through is enough to make anyone queasy, but some diets sound a lot easier than others.
Christian Bale has cracked it for his latest role in Backseat, Adam McKay's upcoming biography movie starring Bale as Dick Cheney, the 46th Vice President of the United States. This sees Bale and director McKay reunite after 2015's fantastic The Big Short, a movie which hilariously illustrated the financial crash of 2008 and showed us with humor just how we are all so, so screwed.
Here Bale is on the red carpet sharing the secrets of the hard work he's put in to his current incarnation (spoilers: it's pies).
Hollywood heartthrob currently he is not. But surely eating pies must be the most British way to prepare for a role ever. Christian Bale is no stranger to the chub: the actor previously put on a fair amount of weight for his role in David O. Russell's 2014 movie American Hustle. Here's a look at some of the other insane weight changes Bale has undergone in his career in preparation for roles.
From 'Reign Of Fire' To 'The Machinist'
Probably Bale's most notorious transformation. From the buff 182lb of Reign Of Fire Bale dropped to just 120lb for The Machinist by eating apples and a single can of tuna per day, plus coffee and cigarettes. This regime is definitely not recommended for living a long and healthy life — see above photo for evidence.
Bale also managed to drop a full 20lbs lower than the his nutritionist recommended was safe. This diet bought him fairly close to doing himself in, because apparently he wanted to push his weight even lower. Yikes.
From 'Batman Begins' To 'Rescue Dawn'
Bale went straight from severely emaciated in The Machinist to buffed-up meatcake for his first outing as Batman in Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy. This transformation didn't take long, as the two movies were released just a year apart. Apparently, Bale gorged himself on ice cream and pizza for the huge weight gain, and no doubt put a lot of energy int working out, in the short 5 months between shooting the two movies.
After Batman Begins wrapped, Bale had a much smaller smaller drop from around 189lb in Batman Begins to 134lb in Rescue Dawn, where he played a starving prisoner of war.
From 'The Dark Knight' To 'The Fighter'
After getting back in shape for Batman once again in The Dark Knight, Bale had another swift and massive drop in weight to play a drug addict and former boxer in The Fighter. And the work paid off: Bale won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for this role.
The actor later explained his process, reporting that he ran excessively to lose weight for the role and joked in an interview with The Huffington Press that "I do a lot of coke whenever I lose weight," then swiftly clarified, "I’m not sure if it’s so funny for this movie, to say that."
From 'The Dark Knight Rises' To 'American Hustle'
Here we see Bale bucking the trend and gaining weight, and not muscle this time, but pure chub. His turn as con-artist Irving Rosenfeld in American Hustle needed a heavier hand, so Bale stepped up the plate and gained the weight by gorging himself on cheeseburgers and donuts.
Pies might be the way Bale is getting into, or rather out of shape for his current role, but over his whole career he has utilized all sorts of yummy, and not yummy, treats to reach his weight goals. Few actors but Bale have shown such dedication to roles again and again — regardless of the toll it takes on his body.