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Hugh Jackman Went 36 Hours With Food Or Water For Les Miserables Role

'Valjean is one of those roles like Hamlet, it's meant to demand more of you than anything else'


Many actors go to extreme measures for the parts they play, and no one can accuse Hugh Jackman of not giving his all in latest venture, 'Les Miserables'. The actor went 36 hours without food or water to achieve the gaunt look his character in the story is known for.

As if singing live on set for the role of Jean Valjean wasn't enough, Jackman has now revealed the extreme measures he took to play the iconic part as well as possible. The 'X Men' star fasted for nearly two days and lost almost two stone for the part, becoming dizzy and unwell due to his dedication:

“I lost probably 20lbs to begin with. For me it was about losing as much fat and being as lean as possible. Tom said, ‘If you are recognisable, I want people to think you are sick’.

“So for the first day of shooting I didn’t drink water or any liquids for 36 hours, which a trainer at the time said is a bodybuilder trick which can give you sunken cheeks and sunken eyes.

“So I went for it — and slightly regretted it 20 hours in. “When I see the first shot I am really glad I did it. But I had massive headaches, was slightly dizzy and very, very grumpy.”

It sounds like filming the Oscar-worthy movie was tough for the film veteran. For months Hugh was far away from his wife of 16 years, Deborra-Lee Furness, and their two adopted children, Oscar Maximillian, 12, and Ava Eliot, seven, back home in Australia.

He says: “I was living on my own for the first time without my family. “Nights were spent protecting my voice, sleeping and generally being very unHollywood. I was doing jigsaw puzzles, not exactly the portrait of the movie star.”

The actor concedes that all his hard work has been worth it:

"I don’t care who you are, no matter how many shows you have done, Valjean is one of those roles like Hamlet, it’s meant to demand more of you than anything else.”

Sounds like it certainly did! We can't wait to see it...

 
 

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