Jason Segel Was Asked to Lose 35 Pounds For ‘The Five-Year Engagement’

Many actors put themselves through mega-transformations for certain roles and movies. Some of the hardest changes to the body and mind involve significant weight gain or loss. Remember when Matthew McConaughey looked nearly skeletal in Dallas Buyers Club? Or Chris Hemsworth’s “starvation diet” to look “scrawny” for Lost at Sea?

Actor Jason Segel is among the roster of celebrities who’ve undergone weight transformation, although maybe not as drastic or intense as some of the others. One time, he discussed being asked to also lose weight for a role. Set to co-star with Emily Blunt in 2012’s The Five-Year Engagement, producers felt Segel needed to shave off 35 pounds. But why the request, and what did Segel think about it?

Jason Segel was asked to lose 35 pounds for ‘The Five-Year Engagement’

In order to be more convincing in their roles, it’s not uncommon for actors to shave off or add on a few pounds. Jason Segel revealed in a Late Show with David Letterman interview a few years ago that Universal Pictures president, Rob Meyer, wanted Segel to drop some weight before filming.

He was set to play Emily Blunt’s love interest in The Five-Year Engagement. Apparently, his current weight at the time was about 35 pounds more than producers thought would be believable. Segel said, “It had to be conceivable,” referring to Blunt’s character ever choosing his character as her on-screen husband, according to CBS News.

How Segel felt about the request

Jason Segel attends the Hasty Pudding Club's 2012 Man of the Year ceremony at Harvard University
The Five Year Engagement star Jason Segel in 2012 | Gail Oskin/WireImage

The beloved comedian and How I Met Your Mother star said the demand for him to lose 35 and the reasoning behind it was “fair.” He got with a private trainer, as Diets in Review shared, had to work out twice each day, watch his calorie intake, and focus on a balanced diet. He also said he wasn’t a fan of the regimen, despite understanding why he needed to do it.

Segel joked about missing out on favorite snacks and food. But in The Five-Year Engagement, he played a chef, and as he told Letterman, he got clever about sneaking bites of deliciousness onset. He laughed about paying some of his co-stars to mess up their lines during scenes with food, thus allowing him to keep eating.

Jason Segel’s other notable roles

Jason Segel managed to lose all 35 pounds for The Five-Year Engagement with Blunt. But it wouldn’t be the last time he’d make a weight transformation. A few years later, the LA native slimmed down again for a comedy called Sex Tape. He hadn’t necessarily been asked to drop a set amount of weight for this one, though. He indicated that he wanted to be in “top shape” for the film.

CNN called Segel’s weight loss for this role “no joke.” He managed to look entirely different, including a slimmer frame and face for the R-rated movie, which also starred Cameron Diaz. But again, he didn’t resort to crazy weight-loss tactics. He told interviewers that he just stuck to exercising, healthy living, and smart eating. He went on to jest, of course, too, by saying, “No more midnight pizzas.”

Most of Segel’s other roles didn’t require any intense weight loss or gains. But he continues to be a well-respected actor who’s dedicated to his roles. Segel’s more recent TV roles include Dispatches from Elsewhere and Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty.

He’ll also appear in a couple of upcoming movies, including Windfall and The Sky Is Everywhere, neither of which required any dramatic weight changes. Jason Segel didn’t seem to mind having to lose a few pounds for a couple of movie roles. And it just reminds fans how dedicated to the craft he really is.

RELATED: Andrew Garfield Once Used Bruce Lee as Inspiration to Get into Shape for ‘The Amazing Spiderman’