Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dreamworks
Sally Field fought hard for the role of Mary Todd Lincoln in Stephen Spielberg's all-star drama Lincoln, and she was determined to do it right -- even if it meant gaining 25 pounds! In an interview on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Field, 66, told the late-night host that it was surprisingly hard to pack on the pounds -- and even harder to take them off. Watch the clip below!
Instead of gorging herself on ice cream to play the full-figured Mrs. Lincoln, Field attempted to take a more health-conscious approach. "It wasn't as much fun as you would think... I tried to do it healthy, which, I understand there isn't any way to do it healthy," she told Leno. "Fat is fat, and if it was going to lodge in my heart and kill me, it was going to lodge in my heart and kill me."
Nonetheless, Field soldiered on with her healthy high-calorie diet, eating brown rice, protein shakes, nut butters, and something called Pro-Gain that makes her wrinkle up her nose at the memory. "Oh God, it was just disgusting," the actress moaned. "I never had a fun meal, basically. It just was discipline."
Field says that it took her six months to put the weight on, and a year to take it off. How did she do it? "I stopped eating. And I'm hungry now," Field joked. "I began to work out like a mad fiend. I had two trainers. I really worked out hard, four times a week."
That same determination is what landed Field the role of Mary Todd Lincoln in the first place. Even though she is ten years older than the film's star Daniel Day-Lewis -- and Mary, in real life, was ten years younger than Abraham -- Field believed she was perfect for the role. In fact, even after director Spielberg told her she hadn't gotten it, she insisted on doing an audition.
"I said, 'I can't let you walk away. Mary belongs to me. I am Mary. I won't let you walk away," the actress recalled in a CBS News interview.
That conversation won her a screen test with Day-Lewis -- which ultimately won her the role. Talk about a lady who knows how to get what she wants!
Watch the trailer for Lincoln now: