Actors taking extreme measures to prepare for their roles is nothing new in Hollywood. We have seen personalities like Christian Bale losing 62 pounds for his role in The Machinist. Matt Damon also shared a similar story of his own while speaking about his 1996 war movie Courage Under Fire. The Jason Bourne fame played the role of a traumatized soldier in the Denzel Washington movie.
Courage Under Fire has a substantial contribution to Matt Damon’s filmography and it can be said that it is the insane dedication of the actor that made it possible. The Saving Private Ryan star went to such an extent that could have left him with a deadly outcome.
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Matt Damon’s insane diet routine for Courage Under Fire had grave consequences
Matt Damon took some extreme measures to play the role of Andrew Ilario who was a former soldier and medic traumatized by his past experiences in the war. Although the role was not major, the insane diet was followed by the Ford v Ferrari star to achieve the desired look by losing 40 pounds.
Damon revealed that he wanted to do something major in his career back then. In an interview, The Martian actor revealed that everyone around him was confused and worried watching his commitment to the role.
“It evolved essentially because there was a light at the end of the tunnel. There was a time limit. Given that, the person that outlined the diet for me didn’t think I was going to be able to stick to it: it was too difficult. When I stuck to it, people got worried. ‘You have to eat, you have to be fit, you really have to be prepared.’ And I refused to do so. ‘Why eat? I’ve come this far, I’m not going to stop now.’”
But as soon as the filming was complete, Matt Damon faced some grave consequences. Various issues such as dizziness, lightheadedness, stress, and PTSD followed. As per the Oscar winner, the diet almost shrunk his heart and could have affected him more.
“I had to be thin and went on an unsupervised diet which could have killed me. A doctor told me later I could have shrunk my heart permanently.”
The Ocean’s 11 star got the fruit of his hard work when his performance in Courage Under Fire led him to get the leading role in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Rainmaker. Further, he also got some of the most memorable appearances and received worldwide critical and commercial success.
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What’s upcoming for Matt Damon?
Matt Damon was recently seen with his long-time collaborator and dearest friend Ben Affleck in the biographical sports film Air. The 52-year-old actor portrayed the role of former Nike executive Sonny Vaccaro alongside Ben Affleck, Viola Davis, Jason Bateman, and Chris Tucker. The movie also enjoyed very positive reactions from the critics and the audiences.
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The Good Will Hunting actor is all set to play a pivotal role in another biographical drama Oppenheimer to be directed by Christopher Nolan. In the movie, Matt Damon will be seen playing the role of Leslie Groves, who was famous for being the director of the Manhattan Project. The movie to be released on July 21 this year also stars Robert Downey Jr., Cillian Murphy, Emily Blunt, and several other notable faces.
Courage Under Fire can be streamed on Hulu.