A scary situation. Brendan Fraser opened up about the drastic measures he took to remain in shape while filming George of the Jungle — and how it affected him physically.
“I was waxed. Starved of carbohydrates,” the Mummy actor, 54, said in an interview for Variety’s Actors on Actors series published on Tuesday, December 6. “I would drive home after work and stop to get something to eat. I needed some cash one day, and I went to the ATM, and I couldn’t remember my PIN number because my brain was misfiring. Banging on the thing. I didn’t eat that night.”
Fraser also revealed that his character in the Tarzan parody film lacked wardrobe options since he only donned “a loincloth.” Despite the terrible conditions, the 1990s film, which also starred Leslie Mann and Thomas Hayden-Church, went on to be a box office hit. The Disney movie is one of Fraser’s most iconic roles to date and made him a household name.
However, the Blast From the Past star took a break from acting in the late 2000s to deal with health issues caused by his work in the Mummy franchise. In 2018, Fraser claimed that he was sexually assaulted by the former president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Philip Berk, back in 2003. He revealed that the alleged incident played a role in his decision to step out of the spotlight.
Four years after the actor came forward with the allegations, he spoke out against how the HFPA handled the situation. In November 2022, he claimed in an interview with GQ that both Berk and himself had to sign a statement that declared the incident “was intended to be taken as a joke and not as a sexual advance.”
“I knew they would close ranks,” Fraser said at the time. “I knew they would kick the can down the road. I knew they would get ahead of the story. I knew that I certainly had no future with that system as it was.”
In 2015, the Encino Man actor kickstarted a comeback for his acting career by appearing in various projects, including The Affair and Martin Scorsese‘s Killers of the Flower Moon. In 2022, Fraser earned critical acclaim for his performance in The Whale and generated buzz for a potential Oscar nomination.
“This is a prime opportunity,” the SAG winner told Vanity Fair in August 2022 of his gig in the Darren Aronofsky film. “I wanted to disappear into it. My hope was that I would become unrecognizable.”
Following the film’s premiere at the Venice International Film Festival, Fraser was brought to tears after he received a six-minute standing ovation.