Fatness and the Actor

I was watching a Gerard Butler movie a couple of weeks ago with the Film Pigs, and I said, “No matter how much I diet and excercise, even if I am in the same awesome physical shape as this guy, I still won’t look anywhere near that good.”

And it’s true. And then yesterday I looked at my big fast food/beer belly in the mirror and I gagged on my own overweight tongue. And then I made a big mistake, and went to a matinée of that new Robin Hood picture. There was this “seduction” scene where Cate Blanchett had to help Russell Crowe get out of his armor, and then there was this perfect glam shot of his shirtless, beefcake upper body. Never mind that the scene itself had all the erotic tension of cleaning out a cat box, but I still got all sad that nobody would ever be taking that glam shot of me. (By the way, Russell Crowe should get some kind of lifetime achievement award for being the movie star who hates being a movie star the most out of all movie stars who don’t like their jobs. It’s got to be such a drag to work three months a year and collect twenty million for his trouble. And it must be even worse knowing that the studio will foot the bill for the personal trainers and private gym and dieticians and chefs that take care of his body so he’ll look good in that one shirtless shot. I mean, to have to lose weight and look good without thinking about it at all. Tough stuff.)

And here’s the real conundrum: most of the guys I’ve come up with through the years (we tend to call ourselves “middle class” actors although I only wind up making middle class income every other year or two) who now get more lucrative theatrical work as series regulars are what I am not…really, really fat. Should I let myself go completely and go after those fat funny guy dollars? Well, I would, but my body type is such that even if I had a giant belly and scads of back fat I would still have chicken legs and tiny wrists which most likely would make me look terribly unhealthy as opposed to that fun, rosy-cheeked middle American beer hall fun guy look.

So, I guess I’ll go on a diet and make sure to get my excercise. Then at least when I’m naked I won’t make myself sick. Even then, I’m going to have to keep those lights low.


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