“When it came to conditioning my body for the role of Charles Bronson there was no official regime: I did very non-specific exercises such as press ups, pushups, abs work and resistance training with the help of my boy Pnut, who is 16 stone of pure muscle and also an ex-US Marine. Essentially I was using him as my machine; he was like a walking gym. My approach was to do a lot of repetitions in order to send messages to my muscles: this helps them start to grow in a way that you can’t make them in the gym. To achieve dense muscle, you need a specific kind of training. Also, to “become” Charlie Bronson I had to quickly put a lot of weight quickly on my forearms, chest and neck. By the time I’d finished, my legs looked like those of a stork in comparison to the top half of my body.”

“I had five weeks to make the transition into Britain’s most dangerous criminal and it was a race against the clock: We didn’t have any time to waste, so I started eating and my arse very quickly got very fat. For Bronson, I put on about 7lbs a week — with no steroids. In the end I’d put on about 2 and a half stone by eating chicken and rice, which was my staple diet throughout the day. Then I’d have a pizza, Häagen-Dazs and Coca-Cola: So not good stuff, but I had to put weight on. I needed to put a layer of fat on my body, because Bronson when he was younger was a big guy, a brawler. My diet was lenient as we weren’t going for the Bruce Lee look and we weren’t looking for the cut.”

“Initially Charles Bronson was very disappointed when he saw me. He said “This kid will never be able to play me.” I just told him, “Don’t worry Charlie I’ll fix it.”  When I came back two weeks later he was thoroughly impressed with what he saw. His sister had been telling him good things about the way I'd been doing his voice and the way I moved like him, but his concern was the physicality of my portrayal of him, but I think I did a good job in the end.”

(Source: AskMen)

Tom Hardy, Bronson

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