/Jennifer Lawrence Shares 1 Acting Trick She Learned From Christian Bale

Jennifer Lawrence Shares 1 Acting Trick She Learned From Christian Bale

Jennifer Lawrence had a hard time getting into character — until she met Christian Bale.

The “Hunger Games” star braved a “Hot Ones” interview released Thursday and, while eating increasingly spicier chicken wings and trying to keep her composure, divulged a treasured acting approach when asked how she flips that “switch” when “action” is called.

“I had always been very on-off, on-off until I did ‘American Hustle’ and worked with Christian Bale,” said Lawrence. “I noticed when the camera started rolling and the crew started preparing and it was gonna be 10 seconds to action, he would start getting ready.”

“I saw that and was like, ‘That seems like a really good idea,’” she continued. “So then I started to do that.”

Bale has established himself as a dedicated actor throughout his career. The Welsh actor intentionally retained an American accent across interviews to stay in character, reportedly lost 60 pounds for “The Machinist” (2004), and gained 40 pounds for “Vice” (2018).

While the Oscar winner told GQ in 2012 he “went a little too far” with “The Machinist,” he certainly committed to embodying former Vice President Dick Cheney years later. Bale recently told BBC Radio 1 that he isn’t fully Method, however, which Lawrence — his 2014 co-star — was grateful for.

“I would be nervous to work with somebody who’s Method because I would have no idea how to talk to them,” she said Thursday. “’Cause like, do I have to be in character? That would just make me nervous. But … I haven’t seen another process I’ve been curious about.”

Bale and Lawrence starred together in David O. Russell's “American Hustle” (2014).
Bale and Lawrence starred together in David O. Russell’s “American Hustle” (2014).

John Lamparski/WireImage/Getty Images

Lawrence isn’t alone in her apprehension of the technique. “Succession” actor Brian Cox recently told The New Yorker his committed co-star Jeremy Strong “is always pretty tremendous” — but suffers from the “American disease” of Method acting.

However, Method acting still has some fans. “Social Network” star Andrew Garfield told Marc Maron on the “WTF” podcast in 2022, he’s palpably “bothered by this idea that ‘Method acting is fucking bullshit.’”

“It’s actually just about living truthfully under imagined circumstances, and being really nice to the crew simultaneously, and being a normal human being, and being able to drop it when you need to and staying in it when you want to stay in it,” Garfield told Maron.

“I don’t think you know what Method acting is if you’re calling it bullshit,” he continued, “or you just worked with someone who claims to be a Method actor who isn’t actually acting the method at all. It’s … very private. I don’t want people to see the fucking pipes of my toilet.”

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