It’s February, which means that most of us have abandoned our hopes of a svelte figure for the new year, and with good reason: Exercising is hard work. It’s a lot easier just sitting on the couch a sobbing into a carton of ice cream about how I’ll never be as beautiful as the people in the moving pictures. Well, that’s because they are better than us in every way, and also because they get paid to be in shape. I barely get paid to do actual work.
Still, that’s no excuse. After all, those beautiful people sometimes have to get ugly and disgusting for roles, and they always manage to bounce back. So, for a little inspiration, I decided to put together a list of actors who went through dramatic changes for roles. No fat suits or fake piercings here; these are the best of the best, truly dedicated to their craft. If they can pull this off and still be beautiful, then there’s hope for all of us yet. So, put down that Twinkie (it’s a collector’s item now, after all) and queue up “Eye of the Tiger.” It’s time to dust off that gym membership card.
10. Rooney Mara- While Mara might have undergone the least drastic transformation for her role as the iconic Lisbeth Slander, she still had a number of piercings done in preparation for the film. That’s right, all the eyebrow, lip and everything-else piercings are real in the American remake of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Luckily for Mara, she didn’t have to undergo any other serious changes for the role, except for the weird haircut. While she removed most of her piercings after filming stopped, she kept her right nipple piercing because there may be a sequel in the works, and, well, who wants to do that twice?
9. Anne Hathaway- No matter how you look at her, Hathaway is still once of the most beautiful actresses in Hollywood. For her dramatic transformation in 2012’s Les Misérables, she lost 25 pounds and pulled a Natalie Portman by shaving her head. All this coming off of her performance as the femme fatale Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises was dramatic, to say the least. While no one knows how she lost the pounds, we’re glad to see her returning to her fighting weight, and I have to admit that her new short do doesn’t look half bad on her. Needless to say, her transformation was hardly the most disturbing to make our list, but it’s one of the most admirable.
8. Russell Crowe- Just so everyone is clear, Russell Crowe got paid to put on 63 pounds of fat for his role in Body of Lies. Every morning, he woke up and had to start his regimen by eating cheeseburgers. I tell you, life really just is not fair. Though to be honest, I don’t know if I could handle putting on that much weight; after all, I don’t have an accent to fall back on. So, I have to tip my hat to the thespian, especially because rumor has it at one point he had a hard time getting out of his car, and it took him nearly two years to slim down again after filming stopped. For the film, he literally put his life on hold to play an average American. Ugh, we really are a disgusting country. I’m sorry you had to go through that for us, Russ.