Much hoo-ha is often made when an actor emerges transformed for a new role, and while the effects of many of them tend to be exaggerated for publicity, the sight of Mark Wahlberg filming Father Stu is definitely worthy of fuss. The Fighter and Transformers star looks truly transformed as he replaces his patented muscular physique with a large beer belly and double chin to play the real-life boxer-turned-priest.
While Mark Wahlberg’s new look is clearly being assisted with some prosthetics, the actor has also put his body through some dramatic weight gain for his role in the upcoming biopic. Wahlberg previously revealed to Jimmy Kimmel the lengths he would be going to obtain the right look for the role, revealing that he planned to gain 30 pounds in six weeks, joking he would do it by enjoying a “20-piece chicken nugget and 20-piece hot wings from Kentucky Fried Chicken with a six-pack of beer.” Isn’t that just a normal Friday night?
Much mockery was recently levelled at an image from Martin Scorsese’s upcoming Western crime drama Killers of the Flower Moon, which depicts Oscar winner Leonardo DiCaprio looking a little the worse for wear but still much like himself. Still, headlines described the actor as rendering himself “unrecognizable” for the role, something which many found to be quite the leap considering the only real difference was some bags under his eyes and a slightly thinner face. Taking nothing away from the actor, whose performance will undoubtedly be another in a long list of stellar ones, Wahlberg’s transformation for Father Stu certainly takes the “unrecognizable” prize.
Mark Wahlberg has become well-known for his intensely strict health and fitness regime, having revealed in the past that he wakes up at the ludicrous time of 2:30 a.m. in order to guarantee he has time to dedicate to his workouts along with his busy work and family life. The actor though was more than ready to let some of those commitments slide for his lead role in Father Stu. “They want me to do it as healthy as possible and I’m like ‘Dude, I’ve been on such a regimen for so long, I just want to eat everything in sight,'” the actor said of his approach to the necessary weight gain. “I want to go bakeries. I want to go to Denny’s. I want to get pancakes. I want to get everything I can possibly get my hands on.”
Father Stu is a project that Wahlberg has been trying to get off the ground for some time and will see Marky Mark star in the biopic as boxer-turned-priest Father Stuart Long. Beginning life as an angry young man, Stu turned to boxing as a release. Sadly, his career in the sport did not take off as he had hoped due to an injury, and so he moved to L.A. to pursue acting. Even more sadly, this did not work out either, when one evening he suffered a horrible motorcycle accident, being hit by one car, then run over by another. It was while staying in hospital that Stu had an out of body experience which caused him to rediscover his faith and enlist in Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon.
His dramatic life did not stop there, as, while studying, he was diagnosed with a rare degenerative muscle disease and was forced to use crutches by the time he was ordained, and eventually resulting in the use of a motorized chair. The man is now held up as an example of faith and love overcoming pain and hardship. Father Stu will also star Mel Gibson as Wahlberg’s father, with Teresa Ruiz (Narcos: Mexico) on board to play his girlfriend.
Father Stu is currently in production, with the release date yet to be announced. Mark Wahlberg will next be seen in Infinite on Paramount+ this summer. This comes to us from The Daily Mail and Twitter user Will Mavity.
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