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Actor Michael Fassbender hungry for realism in Bobby Sands biopic

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Actor Michael Fassbender hungry for realism in Bobby Sands biopic Empty Actor Michael Fassbender hungry for realism in Bobby Sands biopic

Post by Admin on Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:23 pm

{February 23, 2010} extreme method actor weight loss articles

Article on actor Michael Fassbender’s weight loss of 33 pounds in 10 weeks to play fasting prisoner.

Dalya Alberge, Arts Correspondent
Method-acting has a new torchbearer, in the emaciated form of an Irish actor who has redefined the notion of suffering for one’s art.
Michael Fassbender, 31, starved himself for two months to play the IRA hunger-striker Bobby Sands in Hunger, which had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival last night.

The film’s makers believe his weight loss was essential for a convincing portrait of Sands’s final weeks before he died, aged 27, in the Maze prison in Belfast in 1981. Fassbender’s appearance was so frail that one doctor’s receptionist said on seeing the actor: “That guy is really ill.”

Hunger is the directorial debut of the artist Steve McQueen, a former war artist in Iraq, and is one of the few British films singled out for this year’s official programme.
McQueen, 38, told The Times yesterday: “This film is about a person who, in order to be heard, didn’t eat. I knew from the beginning that we had to do it for real.

“It [hunger] really focused Michael on the role. He changed as a person, becoming clearer and more inward-looking. He’s naturally lean and muscular, and he became skeletal. What was taken away was the muscle. You could see the skeleton on [Fassbender's] rib-cage and the hollows in the side of his head.”

Fassbender, who dropped from 73kg (166lb) to 57kg (125lb), survived on a diet of nuts, berries and sardines — about 500 calories a day. “I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t tough,” he said.

Sands, who was jailed for weapons offences, was the IRA’s most prominent martyr and the first of ten prisoners to die on hunger strike.




Celebrity Diet and Fitness Secrets How They Do It

Being a celebrity in the public eye, one can’t help but notice how these people look, we all tend to look up to them, as role models of how to look in day to day life. It’s no big secret that sometimes when they have to do get into a particular role they are going to be playing. Then they will either have to do one of two things either gain weight or lose weight.

Which ever the case maybe we shall be looking briefly at what they have to put themselves through in order to get in shape for a particular role and what exercise and diet regimen they follow. One particular example of this is when a recent film was made starring Michael Fassbender which was called hunger which is based on the true story of some people who went on hunger strike in Ireland in the 1980s in a prison called Maze.

Fassbender played the role of Bobby Sands who originally died from starvation, naturally Fassbender’s mother was very worried about him playing the role, he normally has quite a muscular physique but had to put himself through quite a punishing diet regimen in order to lose quite a lot of weight for this particular role.

Fassbender lost 33 pounds in 10 weeks in order to prepare for the role he starting weight was 11 stone nine pounds and he went down to 9 stone which is what he needed to be for the closing scenes of the film, his arms were stick thin and his face was very drawn and gaunt, and you could see his ribs.

This is just one particular example of how actors have to push themselves to the limit in order to create authenticity rather than using makeup orCGI, which can tend to look a bit fake at times depending on the technology which is used. A former Royal Marine who has worked on several James Bond films and is a fitness adviser to the stars says that they have to be extremely dedicated, whether they are trying to gain weight or lose weight.

Because modern-day audiences are so looking for realism actors these days do have to be, physically fit and in shape because this largely determines whether or not they will get a role. If they look as though they have just come out of a gym and have no other skills, which may be needed throughout the film such as sword fighting which may be part of a fantasy film, they need to have that rugged look and be able to get into the part both physically and mentally otherwise the audience won’t be very convinced.

For one particular role in a recent film one celebrity had to work out twice or three times a day, for six days a week between a period of three to four months, it is quite a punishing regimen but to make sure everything goes to plan they are advised by nutritionists and healthcare professionals to make sure they can withstand what they are doing to their bodies.

Even Daniel Craig had to go through a punishing regimen in order to get in shape, for his role in Casino Royale, as well as quantum of solace he says you do what you have to do, whether it be bench presses, arm curls, double arm rows and runaround.

For his role in hunger Michael Fassbender’s calorie slashing went something like this, he started off on a 900-1000 calorie a day diet at first this didn’t have the desired effect, so drastic measures were needed in order for him to lose more weight.

He was on the 900 calorie a day diet for six weeks, but he wasn’t losing enough weight so what they did eventually was, put him on 600 calories per day in order to get his weight down very quickly, he ate for breakfast in the morning blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries and nuts, but he said you have to be careful with not because they can be quite high in calories.

He would try and last the rest of the day and eat some sardines on bread for his dinner on the 1000 calorie a day diet, and went with out on the 600 calories a day diet. He said that having dinner was enough to curb your appetite a bit but not stop it. In order to keep his muscle wastage down he walked for four miles a day, skipped and did some yoga, amazingly enough “he had boundless energy” he said.

So there you have it sometimes it’s not that easy being a celebrity actor you have to put your body through, tremendous physical and mental strain at times in order to prepare for roles. Please don’t use this as a guideline for your eating habits and don’t start slashing your calories down to 600 per day like Michael Fassbender did for his role in the film hunger.

When you’re eating that many calories per day you’re verging on becoming anorexic which is something you don’t want to do, and also bear in mind that onset these people have nutritionists and professional fitness instructors to monitor what is happening with them and how much they should and shouldn’t be doing. This post is to just show you what they have to put themselves through in order to become more convincing in a particular role.


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