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Austin Butler says he felt ‘awful’ after drinking melted ice cream to gain weight for ‘Elvis’

“I just went down the rabbit hole of obsession,” Butler said.

Austin Butler did everything possible to prepare for his role as Elvis Presley in "Elvis" — including a very unconventional liquid diet.

When the 31-year-old's agent told him he needed to gain weight to play the older version of Presley, he knew needed to make it happen. His solution? Microwave Häagen-Dazs ice cream and drink it.

“It’s fun for a week or so,” he said in an interview with Variety. “And then you feel awful with yourself. But we were planning on shooting chronologically in the beginning. That quickly went out the window, then especially with COVID. It was just impossible.”

Aside from the ice cream, Butler, who won a Golden Globe for best actor in a motion picture, shared in the interview that he would also buy two dozen doughnuts and eat them all.

Austin Butler as Elvis Presley for the movie "Elvis"
Austin Butler as Elvis Presley in "Elvis."Alamy

From the doughnuts, along with the melted ice cream, Butler's body changed. “I really started to pack on some pounds,” he said.

Butler explained that Ryan Gosling was the inspiration behind the melted ice cream weight-gaining tactic. Gosling reportedly used the strategy while prepping for a "Lovely Bones" role he was originally casted for but was fired from days before production over a disagreement on his character's appearance.

Despite Butler going "down the rabbit hole of obsession," as he put it, completely changing himself for the role, he revealed he ended up wearing a body suit for the scenes he filmed as the older Presley.

"And I broke down his life into periods of time where I could hear the differences in how his voice changed over the years and how his movement changed over the years and I spent two years studying, trying to find his humanity as best as I could through that,” he said.