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Mark Wahlberg is one of the most well-known actors on the planet. He’s been in business for nearly three decades and has shown off his versatile acting skills in a number of films.

In his latest film Father Stu, which is based on a true story, Wahlberg plays a boxer-turned-priest named Stuart Long. He had to gain 30 pounds in just a few weeks for the role and revealed that it was pretty difficult for him to do.

Mark Wahlberg, who gained 30 pounds for 'Father Stu,' being interviewed at a special screening of the film
Mark Wahlberg, who gained 30 pounds for ‘Father Stu,’ being interviewed at a special screening of the film | Scott Eisen/Getty Images For Sony

Wahlberg helped finance ‘Father Stu’ movie

While making the rounds promoting Father Stu, Wahlberg joined The Greg Hill Show on WEEI 93.7 in Boston to talk about getting the movie made. And why he chose to help finance the film.

“It wasn’t that it was hard to get Hollywood to make the movie,” he told the radio host. “It wasn’t like I pitched it to everybody. This is certainly not the type of movie that studios are going to jump on anyway. People are looking for superhero movies, they’re looking for franchises … That being said, I was like, ’Let me just kind of figure it out on my own so there’s no outside interference with the creative.’ I did slip it to a couple of people … but I said ‘Let’s just do it on our own and take that kind of swing. I’ve always been betting on myself anyway.”

Gaining 30 pounds for the movie wasn’t easy

Wahlberg also revealed that he had to gain 30 pounds in just a few weeks for the film and that wasn’t an easy thing to do.

“When I did all the weight-gaining for this movie, people thought, ‘Oh, how fun, you get to put on 30 pounds,’” the actor recalled but added that he wasn’t getting to eat whatever he wanted. “I wasn’t eating Wahlburgers all day,” he stated. “I went to this doctor, who was supposed to be like, ‘I’m the guy who knows how to do it the healthy way.’ And I was just eating stuff you wouldn’t want to eat once in a day, never mind eating seven, eight times a day for six weeks.”

The star previously talked about his calorie intake while filming when he was a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

“Unfortunately, I had to consume, for two weeks, 7,000 calories, and then for another two weeks 11,000 calories,” he explained. “It was fun for about an hour and then it’s such a hard, physical thing to do … even when you’re full, you’d wake up after a meal. I was eating every three hours.”


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Wahlberg discussed the challenges of gaining and losing weight as he’s gotten older

During his chat with Fallon Wahlberg, who turned 50 on June 5, admitted that gaining and losing so much has gotten more difficult now that he’s older. But making a film he’s passionate about kept him motivated.

“Once the metabolism starts to slow down, it gets really difficult. I was trying to get this movie made for six years, we only had 30 days to shoot it, and so I wanted to really make it happen,” he said.

Father Stu hits theaters on April 13.