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Christian Bale Says His Days Of Transforming His Body For Roles Might Be Behind Him

Christian Bale Says His Days Of Transforming His Body For Roles Might Be Behind Him
Castelao Productions/Filmax Entertainment; Plan B Entertainment/Gary Sanchez Productions

If there's one thing Christian Bale is known for, aside from a very gravely Batman voice, it's the physical transformations he undergoes for his roles. The actor is known to yo-yo his weight from role to role, in order to better portray his characters.

Now, however, the actor is considering calling it quits on the dangerous transformations. In an interview with The Sunday Times, the actor described his process with playing Dick Cheney in the new film Vice.

Bale told the interviewer:

"They'd tell me the right kinds of foods to eat to gain weight without, er, dying,"
"In the midst of that, I called Gary Oldman, who'd just played Churchill. I said, 'Gary, how much weight did you put on?' He told me he didn't put on any.
"By this time, I'm 20 [pounds] in. I said, 'Wait, none?' I felt like such a tit, but I thought, 'I'm on this road, I'm going to keep going.'"

Despite this attitude, Bale is aware of the danger his transformations put his health in.

"I can't keep doing it. I really can't. My mortality is staring me in the face."

Honest question: Has anyone told Christian Bale he doesn't have to put his life in easily avoidable danger for his acting?

The British-born actor has gained and lost weight a variety of times and ways, for very different roles. It started simply enough, with the actor exercising and tanning to get the vain body of Patrick Bateman for American Psycho. He continued with roles that required him to be physically fit with Reign of Fire and Equilibrium.

However, this is when Bale made his first big transformation. He lost 63 pounds in a few months in order to portray Trevor Reznik in The Machinist. The emaciated character took the actor down to only 121 pounds. His diet consisted of water, an apple, and sometimes a cup of coffee.

Immediately after, Bale won the role of Bruce Wayne in Christopher Nolan's upcoming Batman Begins film. However, in order to continue with the role, he'd have to regain all his physique and then some. With the help of a personal trainer, Bale put on 100 pounds of muscle.

In 2010, Bale lost weight again for The Fighter, a role which earned him an Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor. Then he gained weight for American Hustle, where he played Irvying Rosenfeld. He had to shave part of his hair and grow other parts out to imitate a combover.

After dropping back to a more normal weight, Bale was announced as Dick Cheney in the new biological comedy-drama Vice. This time he had to gain a lot of weight, and a lot of fat in very specific areas.

As exhausting as all this sounds just to talk about, it seems like it was worth it?

Through all his weight gain and loss, Bale wants to thank his wife for sticking by him.

"You've got to feel sorry for my wife. And she still tells me she loves me. She deserves trophies. No matter what happens, my wife's seen it. She saw The Machinist. She saw Cheney. She saw the Batman stuff. She's seen bald, bearded. There's nothing under the sun she can't handle."

Apparently, Bale's kids have their own preferences for his characters. His youngest, Joseph rather enjoyed his dad's body for Vice.

"My son loved the tummy. He would bounce up and down on it."

I mean, you could just hire Chevy Chase.

Bale is up for an Oscar for Best Actor as Dick Cheney in Vice. The film star Bale played the former Vice President during his political career and the aftermath of the September 11th terrorist attacks.