Christian Bale is an actor known for his dramatic physical transformations, with his most extreme change coming in 2004’s ‘The Machinist’ in which he lost 60lbs to play the emaciated Trevor Reznik.
However, a new interview with his co-star Michael Ironside suggests Bale may have dropped the weight simply because of a typo in the script.
"When that script was written, the writer [Scott Kosar] was only about 5ft 6 and a half inches, so he put his own weights in [the script]," Ironside told Huffington Post, “And when Chris did the film, he said ‘Don’t change the weight, I want to see if I can make them.”
"The writer wrote for his reality, but Chris is like 6ft 2, so those weights he writes on the bathroom wall in the film are his actual weights."
Above: Bale and Ironside in the tense thriller ‘The Machinist’
Bale is said to have lost the weight over four months on a crash diet of water, an apple, and one cup of coffee per day, a regime that played havoc with his social life, and his physical well-being.
"One day on set, I hear ‘Psst, Mike’ and I look and it’s Chris, he asks me ‘come here’", recounts Ironside, "So I go to his little cabana and he says ‘I need you to look at something’, and he dropped his overalls and he’s standing there naked."
"He turns around and shows me his ass and he looked like he’d just come out of a concentration camp, and his buttocks had dropped. They’d fallen right out of their sockets of his hips."
Ironside explained to him that when you drop below 0% body fat, your muscles begin to go.
"What’s happening is that the actual connective tissues that run your body are starting to break down. [Bale] looked at me and went… ‘Cool!’"
The Welsh-born star’s next film after ‘The Machinist’ was ‘Batman Begins’, leaving him just six weeks to bulk up as Bruce Wayne. A diet of pizza and ice-cream combined with some hardcore weightlifting helped the actor to reach his desired weight on the other end of the spectrum.
Above: Bale as Bruce Wayne in ‘Batman Begins’
He’s since undergone dramatic weight-loss twice, although never to the same extreme extents as ‘The Machinist’, first to play a prisoner of war in Werner Herzog’s ‘Rescue Dawn’, then to play crack addict Dickie Eklund in ‘The Fighter’ for which he won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar.
Above: Bale dropped 55 pounds for ‘Rescue Dawn’
Above: Bale had bulked up again to play Batman before shedding the weight again for ‘The Fighter’
He’s also not afraid to go the other way either, piling on the pounds to play conman Irving Rosenfeld in 2013’s crime caper ‘American Hustle’, which resulted in the actor herniating a disc in his back due to slouching.