Hugh Jackman Had to Be ‘as Emaciated as Possible’ For ‘Les Mis’

Hugh Jackman  Dave M. Benett/WireImage

In what's easily become the most body-conscious film of awards season, Hugh Jackman is now offering up his diet-and-exercise struggles in playing the embattled Jean Valjean in "Les Miserables."

Given that co-stars like Anne Hathaway have pridefully recounted tales of extreme weight loss to evoke the lean times of the French Revolution, Jackman revealed that he used weight training to counter his lean diet.

"I was spending even longer in the gym–like three hours in the gym –because I needed to be as emaciated as possible, but still keep some muscle on for Jean Valjean," Jackman told Vulture.

"I'd wake up and do 45 minutes of cardio on an empty stomach, eat something, go to the gym, do a vocal warm-up, and then after lunch I'd go back to the gym again. Otherwise, I'd just become skin and bones."

Hathaway, who lost 25 pounds for her role of Fantine in the film, told press at a recent screening that Jackman shed a total of 30 pounds for the flick.

But you can't keep a good Wolverine down — Jackman's body rebounded in a matter of months to slip back into the claws of his comic character for "X Men: Days Of Future Past."

While we wait to see if Jackman's yo-yo trick will earn him trophies in 2013, he and Hathaway can find satisfaction in the fact that "Les Miz" director Hooper didn't let another ensemble member slide.

As love interest Marius, actor Eddie Redmayne got a gentle ribbing for his own body maintenance.

"I remember sitting in rehearsals with Tom Hooper, the director, and he'd be like, 'Where is everyone?' I'd be like, 'They're all in the gym,'" Redmayne recently told the Chicago Tribune. "He'd be like, 'Aren't you the romantic lead? Shouldn't you –' I'm like, 'Yeah. I get to wear really smart costumes and hold a gun.'"

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