8 Actors Who Mastered Insane Skills For Their Roles

Bradley Cooper in Maestro

Bradley Cooper spent six years perfecting a pivotal six-minute moment in the Netflix film Maestro, playing Leonard Bernstein. While showing the film in New York, Cooper told Lin Manuel Miranda

Sigourney Weaver in Gorillas in the Mist

Sigourney Weaver as mountain gorilla specialist Dian Fossey in Gorillas In The Mist in 1988. She immersed herself in gorilla culture to play Fossey.

Robert De Niro in Raging Bull

In preparation for Raging Bull, Robert De Niro boxed three Brooklyn contests and won two. He sparred with Joe Pesci after intensive training.

Robert De Niro in Raging Bull

Natalie Portman lost 20 pounds while shooting Black Swan because she had to train in ballet every day for six months for eight hours to get ready for her part as a prima dancer.

Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible: Fallout

Tom Cruise paid a lot of attention to his part as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible Fallout. Cruise learned how to fly a helicopter because he wanted to be real instead of using CGI and action doubles.

Demi Moore in G.I. Jane

G.I. Jane required Demi Moore to train with Navy SEALs, straining her physically and mentally. She worked out with 40 guys, starting with mile-long runs at 5 A.M.

Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver

To play a taxi driver in Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver, Robert De Niro got an actual license. He worked 12-hour cab shifts the month before shooting.

Uma Thurman in Kill Bill

Uma Thurman trained in numerous martial disciplines to become The Bride in Kill Bill. Thurman said it included "three kung fu styles, two sword fighting styles, knife throwing, knife fighting, hand-to-hand combat, Japanese speaking."