From a breakout performance in Shameless to an all-conquering role in FX’s hit The Bear, it’s no secret that Jeremy Allen White is Hollywood’s next big thing, but he hasn’t always played the part. The plucky New Yorker looks borderline unrecognisable from his early days on-screen, where he was often typecast as the scrawny sidekick, rather than the hulking hero. Now, the bonafide star is the picture of fitness, sporting a remarkable physique that would put many professional athletes to shame, and the internet has noticed. Jeremy Allen White’s body transformation has made global headlines for months, but upon the first trailer reveal for The Iron Claw, his upcoming wrestling biopic, interest piqued.
In the upcoming A24 film, White plays Kerry Von Erich, a member of the infamous Von Erich family wrestling dynasty. Blonde and feathered, Kerry plays an integral role in the family’s rise through the professional wrestling ranks, taking orders from patriarch Fritz Von Erich, however, things are not as they seem. A series of unfortunate events sees tragedy blanket the family, sending the dynasty crumbling to the mat.
The biopic has been described as a “family portrait, about a wrestling family who revolutionised the sport and then suffered tragedy,” by writer and director, Sean Durkin, but much of the intrigue about The Iron Claw has centred around its stars. Leads Zac Efron (who plays Kevin Von Erich) and White have managed to completely transform their bodies, adding a wealth of muscle to their traditionally lean frames.
For White, who is perhaps best known for playing a Michelin-star chef with a unique connection to the culinary arts, it meant getting even further embroiled in the world of food. In an interview with Esquire earlier this year, White revealed that he gained a whopping 40 pounds for the role, a task that saw him eating to the point of exhaustion.
“Eating all the time. Like, never stopping,” he told Esquire in May. “In the morning, I would have waffles, almond butter. In the middle of the day, I was eating turkey patties and avocado all the time. It’s really just gross. You’re trying to consume as much as you possibly can, and, to be honest, you don’t feel great.”
In order to make the most of the calories he was consuming, White significantly upped his training, packing on some serious muscle. While his hard work has resulted in an incredible physique, Jeremy Allen White is not convinced the bodybuilding life is for him.
“I was training as well, but, I don’t know, trying to get that big, it’s no way to live.”
Try telling that to co-star Zac Efron. The Hollywood A-lister took his training to the next level for The Iron Claw, with White revealing that he was in awe of the Baywatch star’s preparation.
“Zac’s a maniac,” White told Esquire.”He’s so focused and knowledgeable on training, diet, all that. In terms of a physical transformation, I think he kind of blew us all out of the water. He looks really amazing in this thing.”
The upcoming A24 film The Iron Claw is set to release in cinemas on 22 December 2023, however, it’s likely to debut in Australia in mid-January. You can check out the first trailer for the wrestling biopic below.
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