No pain, no gain! Channing Tatum‘s Magic Mike XXL prep wasn’t just about dancing and bro-ing out with his hunky costars. In order to look his absolute best for the sequel, in which he reprises his role as a male stripper, he had to have his body waxed to perfection — something he swore he’d never do again after the first Magic Mike movie in 2012.
Tatum, 34, recounted the painful experience when he stopped by The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Wednesday, Feb. 4, to introduce the titillating Magic Mike XXL trailer, which showcases the Jupiter Ascending actor’s ripped (and yes, hairless) torso.
“I waxed last time, and I promised myself I was not gonna do it again. And then Matt Bomer goes, ‘No, no, you just didn’t have the right lady. She just wasn’t doing it right,'” the star, a real-life former stripper, told DeGeneres. “And then I went again, and it sucked just as bad.”
Part of the problem, he said, was his hair color. “After they started, they said, ‘Oh, you’re ginger’ — I have a little red in there — and they were like, ‘It’s always the worst for them,'” he recalled. “And I’m like, ‘Then why did you start? Why didn’t you tell me this beforehand?'”
Tatum’s costar Stephen “tWitch” Boss, who’s a DJ on DeGeneres’ show, also got waxed for the film — but he did it on camera, in front of a live studio audience, with DeGeneres holding his hand.
“It’s bad either way,” the So You Think You Can Dance alum quipped. “I could have been in front of people or not. It would have been just as painful.”
Tatum was pretty excited to have tWitch join the cast for the sequel — until he realized they’d have to be nearly naked on-screen together. “I don’t know if you know this, but [tWitch] actually has, like, an exoskeleton,” the actor joked of his costar’s body. “He has a thorax. It’s just like slabs of meat in there.”
Added DeGeneres: “There are grooves in there that would hold water.”
The two teased that they have a dance together in the movie — in thongs, according to DeGeneres.
“Maybe? Yeah, in thongs,” Tatum confirmed. “[There’s] very little left to the imagination.”
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