12 / 12

Russell Crowe

Russell Crowe: "Cinderella Man"
To get star Russell Crowe into "fighting shape" for his role as Depression-era boxing champ James J. Braddock for the 2005 flick "Cinderella Man," director Ron Howard recruited legendary trainer Angelo Dundee (83 at the time!), who flew to Crowe's native Australia to spend a month with him. In addition to the boxing training, Crowe biked, swam, and ran on a daily basis under the trainer's tutelage. Dundee, who passed away last year at the age of 90, told Sports Illustrated in 2005 that during the three months the movie was shooting in Canada, then-40-year-old Crowe would work out for an hour each day before coming to the set and sparred on the side with a Canadian amateur boxer. "If I'd had Russell when he was a kid," Dundee said, "I coulda' made a real fighter out of him." If only!

Major Movie-Role Body Transformations

Matt Damon got ripped for his role in "Elysium," which hits theaters August 9. Check out some other stars who hit the gym hard for an acting gig.