De Niro In Godfather Part 2 Ben Foster went the extra mile in preparation for his role in Stephen Frears’ gripping Lance Armstrong biopic, The Program, especially when he decided to take performance-enhancing drugs in order to gain a better understanding of their effects. So, to celebrate the release of this flick on Digital HD, Blu-ray, and DVD, we're now going to take a quick look at some of the other actors who went the distance to portray a character.

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Ben Foster: The Program (2015)

Yes. That's right. As I stated in my intro, Ben Foster actually took drugs to get inside the head of Lance Armstrong. But this isn't the first time Foster has gone all out for a real life role. In 2011 he spent time living on the streets of LA for his small part in, 'Rampart'. Then in 2013 he gulped down handfuls of dirt and endured the same hardships as a Navy Seal for the film, 'Lone Survivor'.

Adrian Brody: The Pianist (2002)

Adrian Brody lost 30 pounds and spent hours learning to play the piano for his role as Holocaust survivor, Wladyslaw Szpilman. But to top it all off, he took method acting to a whole new level by giving up his apartment, selling his car, disconnecting his phone, and ultimately leaving his life behind in order to feel the same loss Szpilman felt.

Robert de Niro: Taxi Driver (1976)

Some say that Robert de Niro’s portrayal of Travis Bickle, the disturbed insomniac taxi driver last seen in Martin Scorsese's classic 1976 crime drama, was nothing short of amazing, fearless, and out of this world. In fact, his strong performance can be attributed to him getting a cab driver’s licence in prepping for the role. Not only did he work 12-hour shifts for a month prior to shooting, on top of that, hardly anybody recognized him. 

Heath Ledger: The Dark Knight (2008)

Heath Ledger went to great lengths in preparation for his part as The Joker in Batman: The Dark Knight. It has been said that his incredible representation was a product of locking himself in his apartment for a month prior to filming, sleeping two hours each night, and never breaking character. Crew members even worried for the actor and warned him that he had taken things too-too far.

Joaquin Phoenix: Walk the Line (2005)

Joaquin Phoenix spent months learning to sing and play the guitar in order to become Johnny Cash in James Mangold’s award winning biopic. Although, to make himself feel even more authentic in the part, Joaquin went the extra mile by only responding to people who called him JR, Johnny Cash’s real name. In hindsight he claimed to be embarrassed about the situation, but maintains that being called Joaquin on the set felt wrong for him. 

Daniel Day-Lewis: Lincoln (2012)

Everyone in Hollywood knows that Daniel Day-Lewis is a bit barmy when it comes to him playing a real life part. For 'My Left Foot' he spent two months in a cerebral palsy clinic. For 'The Last of the Mohicans' he learnt to track and skin animals. And for Spielberg’s 'Lincoln', during production Daniel spoke with a Kentucky accent, both on and off the set, and insisted on being addressed as ‘Mister President’, signing messages to his co-stars as ‘Abe’.

THE METHOD MEN - HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO? THE METHOD MEN - HOW FAR WOULD YOU GO? Reviewed by David Andrews on February 11, 2016 Rating: 5

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