Matthew McConaughey put on 90lbs for a role: ‘I kind of miss being 217 lbs’

Matthew McConaughey attends Los Angeles Photo Call of STX Entertainment Free State Of Jones
Matthew McConaughey is well known for his body transformations for roles. He lost a substantial amount of weight to play AIDS patient Ron Woodruff in 2013′s Dallas Buyer’s Club, for which he won the Oscar. McConaughey was down to just 135 pounds, and at 6′ tall that puts him at a BMI of 18.3, which is just barely underweight, so I guess it’s not as bad as I thought. Still, he looked emaciated. In his new interview with People Magazine, McConaughey says that he put on 90s pounds from his lowest weight of 135, to get up to 217 for his role in Gold, out later this year. (McConaughey plays a prospector and this is not to be confused with that sh*tty romcom he did with Kate Hudson, Fools Gold.) He surely didn’t go straight from 135 to 217, Gold filmed last fall so he was already a normal weight by the time he had to gain. I assume he went from about 185, his current weight, to 217, but still that’s 30 lbs. Here’s how he describes his weight gain.

During your 30s, with hits like The Wedding Planner and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, you became the romantic-comedy king.
How to Lose a Guy is still a gift that keeps on giving. [Residual checks] show up in the mailbox every month from How To Lose a Guy. I applaud that. I quite enjoyed doing those, and they were working, but that became the majority of what I was getting offered. After a while I just said, “Look, there’s only so much I can do in those.” Films I’ve been doing lately, I can go as deep into reality and humanity as I want. My basement is as low as I want to go. I can cry as hard, I can laugh as loud, I can love as hard, I can be as full of rage as deep as I want to go. I can also blow the ceiling off of it and show as much joy as I want.

You transformed again to play a prospector in Gold, coming out at the end of the year.
I got up to 217 lbs. I put on 90 lbs from 135 in Dallas Buyers Club. Trust me, 217 was fun. I kind of miss 217. My family misses 217. I was Captain Fun. It was pizza night any night. Milk shakes? Yes. Cheeseburgers for breakfast? Absolutely. Any indulgence was a good idea.

Where are you now?
One eighty-five. You get hung up on the decades. I got hung up at 210 for two weeks. Once you get to 208, fly down to 201. Hung up at 201 for two weeks, [and] once I got down to 198, fly down to 191 and then hung up for two weeks. Finally I got down to 185, [and] I’m like, “Great. Now I can eat.”

[From People Magazine, print edition]

At a weight of 217, McConaughey was borderline obese by the numbers. I don’t even remember seeing him look heavier! Kaiser covered that story at the time and he must have lost it so quickly. Photos are below, and you could definitely see the difference to how he usually looks although it looks like his shirt is padded in the pics with him with the jacket. In other photos of him just walking around on set (without the tie) his stomach isn’t so large. There were rumors about 10 years ago that McConaughey was going to put out a men’s lifestyle and fitness DVD, probably because we used to see him working out shirtless outside all the time. He’s one of those celebrities who seems to be an expert at gaining and losing weight at this point. He’s like Christian Bale in that way.

Oh and I included his quotes about romcoms because I really like how grateful he sounds about them. He’s not trashing the silly movies he starred in, he’s saying they had a time and place and that it was time for him to move on.

These photos are from October of 2015. The header photo above is from last month.
Matthew McConaughey shows off a full figure and balding hair on the set of his upcoming movie 'Gold' with his co-star Edgar Ramirez filming in Manhattan

Matthew McConaughey seen filming for his upcoming movie 'Gold' in NYC

Matthew McConaughey shows off a full figure and balding hair on the set of his upcoming movie 'Gold' with his co-star Edgar Ramirez filming in Manhattan

Photos credit: WENN, FameFlynet and Pacific Coast News

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27 Responses to “Matthew McConaughey put on 90lbs for a role: ‘I kind of miss being 217 lbs’”

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  1. teehee says:

    Wow…. !

  2. Jane says:

    Am I the only one who thinks after DBC and losing all that weight he just never “recovered” after that? He always had this lean, muscular look. Now he just looks too thin for me; especially in the face.

    • Christin says:

      I’ve thought that as well. He’s never looked the same to me. It could be age gradually catching up, but the change coincided with post-DBC.

    • lucy2 says:

      He definitely never recovered his looks. Of course, being a man, he instead got the “serious actor” label instead and it hasn’t slowed his career one bit.

    • MsGoblin says:

      Yep, it sucked the pretty right out of him.

    • Almondjoy says:

      I completely agree. Was about to comment the exact same thing. He’s taken his body though a lot for the sake of acting. Lots of yo-yoing

    • Pandy says:

      Agree, he totally lost his looks, he was too thin. That people cover though – I was thinking he looks better than I’ve seen his since DBC. He must have been around 200 lbs in those shots.

    • MrsBPitt says:

      I was coming here to say the same thing… After he lost all that weight for DBC, he never looked the same. He never got his “hotness’ back…at least, in my opinion…

    • Starkiller says:

      Yep. I sure hope that Oscar (and the next one he’s clearly after) is worth it, because he has utterly ruined his looks. He looks 90 years old in the header pic,

    • Kyle says:

      I’ve always had that theory that you can neglect (or fight against) your looks for only so long, before eventually your looks get fed up and say, “F*ck you, we’re out of here”. Val Kilmer was the first celebrity I really felt who proved that theory. But, I’ve also been saying it about Matthew McConaughey for quite a few years now too. Totally as an aside, Matthew’s naked bongo-playing BFF and long-time friend of Matt & Ben, Cole Hauser, is looking amazing.

    • Bridget says:

      It’s because he lost too much of his body fat, and you can tell it didn’t come back the same way (likely because he’s older). His face just looks different now.

    • Doodle says:

      My thoughts exactly. I remember seeing him in Contact, and thinking, ” Oh now I get it. He’s beautiful and charming.” Now he just looks like Skeletor.

    • Christina says:

      I came here to say exactly that!!! I think he lost the fat in his face that had been there since childhood, probably. And now it will never come back, which is why he’s looking old and gaunt.

  3. Carol says:

    Yeah, I agree. He did sort of lose his mojo after DBC. Pre-DBC he had a healthy glow but after he still looks ill.

  4. Sara says:

    He’s a really good actor. It surprised me to see him do some really great stuff because he was in so many romcoms. I just loved him in the first True Detective. He was great in Magic Mike and Wolf of Wall street too.

  5. Barrett says:

    This just seems bad for his body. I’m a healthcare practioner and this makes me nervous

  6. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    H, I’m so tired of everybody raving because MM lost/gained weight. Isn’t he a fine actor? Big deal. He’s foolish to do that to his body and he has ruined his looks. God, he’s so pompous and full of himself.

  7. Azurea says:

    Which one is his real hairline?

  8. Dinah says:

    Matt Damon showed Courage Under Fire when he dramatically dropped weight. The difference is Damon did it when he was very young and could get away with it. If you’re ever going to trick your body and it may still forgive you the morning after, it is only when you’re young and can rebound more quickly. Mother Nature forgives. Father Time remembers.

    • what's inside says:

      Great comment. I am going to try to remember that adage.

    • RuddyZooKeeper says:

      Matt Damon has said that weight drop ravaged his body. He said his metabolism and health have never been the same. Youth doesn’t protect you, evidently.

  9. ana says:

    His plastic surgery is really apparent right now.

  10. Esmom says:

    Balding, he looks so much like Prince William to me (or maybe William in a couple years), yikes!

    This yo-yo weight stuff is really bad. Was gaining weight THAT crucial to this role? Good actors shouldn’t need to rely on gimmicks like that, should they?

    And I agree that he never regained his looks after his major weight loss. He’s like a shell of his former self somehow.

  11. AE says:

    135+90 does not equal 217? I know it’s only 8 pounds off but for some reason that annoys me. Also, BMI standards are so ridiculous and would only make sense if every single person had the same body fat %

  12. AnotherDirtyMartini says:

    Wait. What? He’s saying he weighed 127 lbs. That’s extremely skinny. I think he’s fairly tall to boot. I knew he was a rail in DBC, but damn, this yo-yoing all seems dangerous.