Christian Bale piles on weight to play Dick Cheney

Ben Bussey
UK Movies Writer
Christian Bale, left, almost unrecognisable as he prepares to shoot role as Dick Cheney (picture credit: Getty Images, WENN)

Christian Bale is once again radically altering his body in the name of his art.

The 43-year old English actor, notorious for his method approach – particularly when it comes to gaining or losing weight – has piled on the pounds for his latest role in ‘Backseat,’ a biopic of former US Vice President Dick Cheney.

The film, set to co-star Sam Rockwell as George W Bush, will reunite Bale with writer-director Adam McKay, with whom he previously worked on Oscar-winning 2015 drama ‘The Big Short.’

Bale’s new look was premiered to the public at the Telluride Film Festival in Toronto, Canada, where his weight gain – plus his dyed eyebrows – rendered him almost unrecognisable.

Bale photographed with Gary Oldman at Telluride Film Festival 2017 (credit: Getty Images)

This is far from the first time Bale has induced significant physical change for the sake of a role. Infamously, he lost 63 pounds for ‘The Machinist’ in 2004, taking his body weight down to a skeletal 120 pounds. He then piled 100 pounds on immediately afterwards for his role in ‘Batman Begins.’

Ironically, it emerged years later that Bale lost more weight for ‘The Machinist’ than he needed to, due to a mistake in the script.

Christian Bale in 2004’s ‘The Machinist’

‘Backseat’ will reportedly focus on how Cheney, who served as Vice President under George W Bush between 2000 and 2008, became “the most powerful Vice President in history, and how his policies changed the world as we know it.”

Steve Carrell (who co-starred with Bale in ‘The Big Short’) is thought to be up to play Donald Rumsfeld, whilst Amy Adams (who co-starred with Bale in ‘The Fighter’) has been linked to the role of Cheney’s wife Lynne.

No release date has been scheduled at present.

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