7 Actors Who Were Never The Same After a Role

Actors who were never the same after a role

Actors often go through physical changes after roles. However, for some actors the consequences last long after they’re done filming.

Here are 7 actors who were never the same after their roles.

Jennifer Lawrence needed therapy after Poker House

Based on the real-life of filmmaker Lori Petty’s adolescent years, Lawrence starred in the independent movie The Poker House (2008), which also starred Selma Blair and Chloe Grace Moretz.

At the time, 16-year-old Lawrence portrayed Agnes, a teenage girl who is sharing the responsibility of raising her younger sisters because their mother is an alcoholic and drug addict. The Mother actress acknowledged that the tragic and emotionally taxing role forced her to seek therapy while the film garnered positive reviews from critics and viewers.

The role left such an impact on her mentally that it lingered with Lawrence even after wrapping up the shot schedule. “With The Poker House, I was 16 and it was my first movie. Now fortunately I know how to leave the character when I leave work,” she said.

Lady Gaga saw a psychiatric nurse because of her House of Gucci role

To portray Patrizia Reggiani in House of Gucci, Lady Gaga totally committed to the role, living up to it both on and off the film. The iconic star tells Screen about finding the heart of a killer.

To fully commit to her roles “on a cellular level,” Gaga employed a method acting approach to play Italian socialite, Patrizia Reggiani, she told Stephen Colbert.

Ultimately, though, she got so deep into the role of Reggiani that she began to seek help for her mental health. “I had a psychiatric nurse with me towards the end of filming,” Gaga said. “I sort of felt like I had to. I felt that it was safer for me.”

Part of it was how “dark” Reggiani’s life was, Gaga explained. “I brought the darkness with me home.” She also recognizes that her commitment to the role isn’t necessarily something to glorify. “I don’t think that any actor should push themselves to that limit,” she said.

Bill Skarsgård had strange dreams about Pennywise after filming wrapped

After spending months getting in character as Pennywise the Clown for It, Bill Skarsgård had a difficult time shaking his onscreen persona.

In an interview with The New York Times, the actor explained how he put his all into playing the evil entity:

“Normally when you do a movie, you have those mundane days when it’s like, ‘Today is the scene where I get coffee.’ With this character, there were none of those. Everything I did took 100 percent of my energy. It was by far the most exhausting character I’ve ever done, physically and mentally.”

Not only did Skarsgård manage to frighten viewers worldwide, but when filming the movie, his fellow actors were also frequently unnerved by Pennywise.

Several of the moments in It need Skarsgård to work closely with the child actors because the majority of the film centers on Pennywise and the members of the so-called Losers’ Club. Every time Skarsgård worked, he made an effort to remain in character to make the children’s reactions as authentic as possible. He explained to Interview magazine, “On set, I wasn’t very friendly or goofy. I tried to maintain some sort of weirdness about the character, at least when I was in all the makeup.

Additionally, when he was in costume, Skarsgård was kept completely separate from the actors playing his young victims between takes. Because of this, the children had no idea what Pennywise would look like in each scene.

Bill recalled when he realized just how effective this separation tactic was. He told Interview, “This one kid started crying. He started to cry and the director yelled, ‘Action!’ And when they say ‘action,’ I am completely in character. So some of these kids got terrified and started to cry in the middle of the take, and then I realized, ‘Holy s***. What am I doing? What is this? This is horrible.'”

Skarsgård’s Pennywise didn’t just scare his co-star. Skarsgård himself was haunted by the killer clown even after filming concluded. He told Entertainment Weekly, “I was home, done with the movie, and I started having very strange and vivid Pennywise dreams. Every night, he came and visited.”

Skarsgård further elaborated on the dreams, saying that they generally took one of two forms. In one, he was having to deal with Pennywise as “a separate entity.” In the other type, he found himself as Pennywise in weird situations, like “out in public,” with people staring at him.

Sarah Paulson picked up an unwanted habit while filming The People vs. O.J. Simpson and American Horror Story

As the lead in The People vs. O.J. Simpson and American Horror Story, Sarah Paulson received a great deal of praise; yet, she had to smoke for her roles. It’s a bit of a dilemma that Paulson doesn’t smoke in real life or didn’t until she started smoking frequently on set.

In an interview with Stephen Colbert, Paulson admitted that after the initial disgust of smoking for the first time wore off, she started to crave cigarettes for real, becoming impatient to film scenes that required her to smoke. In some circles, this would be called “method acting” since the person Paulson was portraying (Marcia Clark) was a well-known chain smoker in real life. Unfortunately, it’s also known as being addicted to cigarettes.

Paulson described the whole ordeal as “a real situation,” which is code for something that would ordinarily be a problem for someone who isn’t a star who can pay someone to slap cigarettes out of their mouth after filming wraps.

Margot Robbie got lost in her role in I, Tonya

In I, Tonya, Robbie plays the most notorious figure in figure skating history, Tonya Harding, the young ice queen from Portland, Oregon, who became a tabloid sensation when her rival at the 1991 World Championships, Nancy Kerrigan, was forced out of the competition after getting whacked on the knee with a baton.

After herniating a disk in her neck on set, Robbie needed weekly MRI tests, but her physical health was the least of her worries. At times, the Oscar nominee became so engrossed in the part that it became dangerously difficult to distinguish between work and personal life.

In an interview with Grazia magazine, Robbie said:

I had lost my mind. I genuinely thought we were these people and we were off the set, running down the street screaming at each other and the cameras are running after us. I think I was screaming something about needing to go to hospital because my hand was broken.
It wasn’t, but I was so caught up in the moment. And Sebastian was like, ‘Margot, where are you going?’ He went to pick me up because I was continuing to tear down off-set and I turned and punched him in the head.

She continued:

”A few times I’ve genuinely thought I wasn’t on set and that I was that character in that time and in that place.
To truly forget there’s a camera in your face is really hard. When it does happen, it’s really exhilarating. I don’t know if it’s because you’re so tired when you’re filming you’re almost delusional.“A few times I’ve genuinely thought I wasn’t on set and that I was that character in that time and in that place.
To truly forget there’s a camera in your face is really hard. When it does happen, it’s really exhilarating. I don’t know if it’s because you’re so tired when you’re filming you’re almost delusional.

Charlize Theron was almost paralyzed while filming Aeon Flux

Charlize Theron pushed herself to her absolute limits for her role in 2005’s Æon Flux, and it almost backfired big time during a botched backflip — she landed on her neck and suffered a herniated disc, halting the production for two months.

“That injury scared me — I was almost paralyzed,” she told Total Film magazine (via Express). “I’ve definitely come to a place in my career where I would be the first to say, without feeling guilty or not badass enough, ‘You know what? I don’t need to do this.’ It’s wise because I felt guilty for shutting down a production 10 days into shooting for eight weeks.” Theron suffered from the aftereffects of the injury for the best part of a decade.

“I had eight years of pain management, where I just couldn’t get rid of the spasms and the nerve damage.” She said.

In 2013, she reportedly underwent surgery to finally correct the problem. Theron wore a neck scarf to Variety’s 5th Annual Power of Women event that year, but it couldn’t conceal the small scar on her neck. “It’s been bothering her a lot lately so she had surgery to correct it and they had to go through her neck,” an insider told Us Weekly. “She will be totally fine.”

Anne Hathaway pushed herself to the limit for Les Misérables

Anne Hathaway pushed herself to the brink in Tom Hooper’s film adaptation of the musical Les Misérables, playing tuberculosis-stricken Fantine, cutting her hair and shedding 25 pounds. While her efforts were recognized — she won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress that year — the experience had a significant impact on the actress.

“I was in such a state of deprivation – physical and emotional,” she told Newsweek. “When I got home, I couldn’t react to the chaos of the world without being overwhelmed. It took me weeks till I felt like myself again.”

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