Lady Gaga spoke in an Italian accent for nine months straight
While shooting her 2021 movie House of Gucci, Lady Gaga spoke in an Italian accent for nine months straight – even offscreen. Playing Patrizia Reggiani in the crime drama, Gaga went above and beyond in dedicating herself to the role, apparently never breaking character between takes.
Jared Leto sent crude gifts to his costars
The Joker has been portrayed by some of Hollywood’s finest. Jared Leto vowed to step up to the plate when he played the iconic villain in 2016’s Suicide Squad, apparently sending used condoms, sex toys, and even a live rat to his costars. A step too far? Perhaps, but at least Leto gave the role his all.
Daniel Day-Lewis spent 48 hours in solitary confinement
Daniel Day-Lewis is renowned for his extreme method acting practices. Perhaps his most extreme actions were while he was shooting In the Name of the Father. To fully immerse himself in the character’s headspace, the actor lost over 50 lbs for the role and locked himself away in solitary confinement – going without food or water for two days straight.
Robert De Niro fought in real boxing rings
Robert De Niro studied under a professional boxer trainer in order to get in top shape for his role in Raging Bull. Not only did the actor bulk up to look the part, he entered the ring himself – actually winning two of his three fights.
Tom Hanks got an infection due to not bathing
Tom Hanks refused to bathe or cut his hair while filming Castaway – a decision that led to a stellar performance, but potentially deadly consequences. The actor ended up catching a staph infection due to his poor hygiene, being rushed to hospital just before the infection poisoned his blood.
Heath Ledger wrote diary entries while in character
The late Heath Ledger gave an unforgettable performance when he took a swing at playing the Joker in The Dark Knight. To get into character, Ledger locked himself away for months, scribbling diary entries whilst in character as one of cinema’s most deranged villains. Most of the ramblings were of the Joker’s dialogues, enabling Ledger to fully embody his characterization.
Leonardo DiCaprio slept in an animal carcass
Leonardo DiCaprio refused to be snubbed of yet another Oscar while filming The Revenant. To completely get in the headspace of a 19th-century trapper, DiCaprio took swims in frozen rivers and ate raw bison. In a step that truly pushed boundaries, the actor also slept inside a real animal carcass. Gross.
Hilary Swank almost died from a staph infection
Hilary Swank gained 19 lbs of muscle over a three-month training period for her role in Million Dollar Baby. The actress trained so hard and fast that she didn’t even realize when a blister had popped in her foot, leading her to contract a potentially fatal staph infection. Doctors told Swank she was only hours away from the infection reaching her heart.
Rooney Mara got a huge amount of piercings
Rooney Mara underwent a massive transformation for her character in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. She signed onto the role without a single piercing on her body, but ended up getting piercings on her ears, lip, nose, eyebrow, and even her nipple. Talk about commitment.
Nicolas Cage ate a live cockroach… twice
While filming Vampire’s Kiss, Nicolas Cage not only ate two cockroaches for a scene – he insisted on doing so. The original script called for Cage to swallow a raw egg, but the actor wanted to impress potential directors. Years later, Cage has said he regrets eating the critters and would never do so again.