Drawing from personal experiences can be one of the greatest strengths for method actors. Mickey Rourke was a front-liner during the 80’s and 90’s but his leading roles began to dry up after that. Playing the part of a former wrestling champion trying to reclaim his glory days in ‘The Wrestler’ became a direct reflection of Rourke’s career as well. The similarities were hard to miss but his performance was electrifying.
This Korean legend has made his mark around the world with his grit and talent. He is known to have no qualms in performing the necessary deed to make his character more believable. In ‘Old Boy’, not only did Choi brand himself with a hot wire to imitate the action of tattooing himself, but he also ate a live octopus purely because the scene demanded it.
Hilary Swank has played some tough roles during the course of her career. This critically acclaimed actress has been known to take an unconventional path in order to secure the roles that she fancies. In order to land her part in ‘Boys Don’t Cry’, Hilary tried to audition anonymously, relying purely on her acting chops to land the part. After she was cast in the role, she spent a month living as Brandon Teena in order to fully understand the headspace of the controversial personality.
Dustin Hoffman has played some truly unique and intriguing roles. His preparation for ‘Marathon Man’ involved him starving himself and relying on sleep deprivation in order to better portray a character who was undergoing physical and psychological deterioration.