Zac Efron is no stranger to packing on some muscle for a role. We first saw the actor buff up for Baywatch in 2017. Now he’s undergone another dramatic transformation as he prepares to play wrestler Kevin Von Erich in the upcoming biopic ‘The Iron Claw’.
Just a few months after his most recent project ‘The Greatest Beer Run Ever’ finished filming, Efron has wasted no time in preparing for his next project. The former High School Musical star has been spotted shirtless on the set of his latest film with bulging muscles and a six pack of ab’s on full display. The actor’s buff physique is accentuated by a questionable bowl cut and bronzed tan that we can only assume will play into his role in the film.
Efron is starring as former heavyweight wrestling world champion Kevin Von Erich in The Iron Claw. The film follows the influential Von Erich family, who’s wrestling dynasty helped shape modern professional wrestling. To play the heavyweight wrestler, Efron has bulked up to a level we’ve never seen before.
In another recent training shot, Efron highlights his improved physique with some toned arms and what has become a typical six pack. It’s all part of his preparation for The Iron Claw, but given Efron’s past struggles with bulking up, his recent transformation might be concerning.
Efron previously underwent a dramatic transformation for his role in Baywatch. He described the training process as a challenge both physically and mentally. “I started to develop insomnia, and I fell into a pretty bad depression, for a long time,” he told Men’s Health US. “That Baywatch look, I don’t know if that’s really attainable,” he said.
It’s not just Efron’s body that’s been turning heads. The star’s facial transformation after he broke his jaw last year has also been drawing attention. The 35-year-old recently opened up about breaking his jaw after he was rumoured to have undergone plastic surgery to transform his face.
Efron told Men’s Health US that he broke his jaw when he slipped and was knocked unconscious in his own home. Through rehabilitating his jaw, his masseter muscles had to compensate and worked together with the other muscles of his face to create the chiselled jawline that drew fans attention. Many speculated that Efron was the victim of a botched plastic surgery operation. But he was unbothered by these rumours and instead focused on his own rehabilitation. “If I valued what other people thought of me to the extent that they may think I do, I definitely wouldn’t be able to do this work,” he told Men’s Health US.
Efron’s upcoming role in The Iron Claw tells the tragic story of the Von Erich wrestling Dynasty. Family patriarch Fritz introduced the family to wrestling after he was a successful pro in the 50s and 60s. The Von Erich’s dominated the pro circuit in the late 20th century, but tragedy struck in the form of an alleged family curse. Of Fritz Von Erich’s six sons, five died young. Efron plays the only surviving son, Kevin.
While Efron has struggled with his training and mental health in the past, the actor believes he’s turned a corner in how he approaches fitness. “I enjoy pushing myself and really laying it all out, to the point where I kind of have to do it. Otherwise, I don’t feel like myself.” Efron’s latest transformation is pretty impressive, but his mental resiliency might be even more remarkable than his rock hard abs and massive arms.