10 Times Actors Went All Out to Get Deep in Character and Made Us Say, “That’s Something”
Method acting is a popular practice in Hollywood, and many famous actors decide to use it to prepare for a role. Although the technique has many variations, it usually requires actors to empathize with their characters and to imagine the circumstances of the scene they’re preparing for. Some actors, however, decide to go to extremes and stay in character even when they’re not on the set of a movie.
We at Bright Side were shocked by the great lengths these 10 actors went to in order to accurately portray a role.
1. Colin Firth had a stammer even after the shooting of The King’s Speech.
To get into character and realistically portray King George VI in The King’s Speech, Colin Firth watched many hours of archive footage, so he could perfect the king’s stammer. Firth’s masterful portrayal of the King George earned him an Oscar for Best Actor, but it also left him with a real-life stutter for a while. The famous actor even lapsed into the stammer during an interview for a London magazine after the filming of the movie ended.
2. Tom Holland went back to high school.
In order to prepare for his famous role as Spider-Man, Tom Holland decided to go undercover and went back to high school for a few days. Holland even had a fake name and a fake accent so that no one would recognize him. The actor described the experience as ’really strange’ and ’fun’, mostly because the New York high school he went undercover at was so different from the actual high school he had attended in London.
3. Jodie Foster trained with the FBI.
The famous actress went to great lengths to get into character for her role in The Silence of the Lambs. In the iconic movie, Jodie Foster portrays a young FBI cadet, and she even received professional training for this role. Foster received instructions from an FBI agent and attended new agent training classes to prepare to play Clarice Starling.
4. Nick Nolte spent 5 weeks living as a homeless man.
In Down and Out in Beverly Hills, Nolte plays a homeless man who is taken in by a rich couple, intrigued by his past life and adventures. To prepare for the role, Nick Nolte spent 5 weeks living on the streets of Los Angeles. His authentic portrayal of Jerry Baskin won the praise of several critics, who were very impressed by his performance.
5. Meryl Streep refused to associate in real life with her on-screen employees.
To better portray the cold and cruel boss, Miranda Priestley, Meryl Streep went no-contact with her co-stars on set, which admittedly left her very lonely. Although her role in The Devil Wears Prada got her an Academy Award nomination, Streep later said that she planned to stay far away from method acting in the future.
6. Dwayne Johnson blacked out 8 times during the filming of Hercules.
For the filming of an important scene in the movie where Hercules attempts to break free from his chains, The Rock asked for real steel chains to make the part more authentic. His acting was so intense that he passed out from the adrenaline rush during all the 8 times the scene was filmed.
7. Harrison Ford assisted in real life open-heart surgery to play a doctor.
In the thriller movie The Fugitive, Harrison Ford plays a surgeon so to prepare for a scene in the film, Ford assisted in a real-life open-heart surgery. The famous actor also injured his leg during the shooting of a different part, but he refused medical treatment and continued filming so that his character’s limp would be more realistic.
8. Lady Gaga spoke in an Italian accent for 9 months.
For her role in House of Gucci, the actress and pop star revealed that she lived as Patrizia Reggiani ’for a year and a half’ and spoke in an Italian accent non-stop for 9 months, even off-camera, never breaking out of character. During the shooting of the movie, Lady Gaga started practicing a local dialect from Vignola, and later she switched to fancier accents from Milan and Florence.
9. Heath Ledger locked himself away in a hotel room for a month.
In order to accurately portray the character of Joker in The Dark Knight, Heath Ledger self-isolated in a hotel room in London for a month. Ledger spent these weeks writing daily diary entries from the point of view of his on-screen character.
10. Alan Rickman got involved in costume designing.
Alan Rickman asked for a few changes to be made to Snape’s outfit in the Harry Potter franchise because he felt that it should have lots of buttons and tight sleeves. The actor imagined Snape buttoning up when he developed the character, and was convinced that the costumes were a big part of Snape’s personality.
How many of the movies on this list have you watched? Which of these actors do you think delivered the most convincing performance?