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    (From left) Jessica Alba, Cameron Diaz, Oscar Isaac, Jennifer Lawrence and Christian Bale

    Having picked up a skill for a movie, these actors are now hooked for good

    Right on target
    She is everybody’s favourite. Jennifer Lawrence, 23, is adorable and talented. For her movie, The Hunger Games, the actress had to learn archery. She got so hooked on to the sport that she started carrying her kit in the car. Lawrence trained with five-time Olympian and archery phenom, Khatuna Lorig, for an hour a day, for 15 days. In fact, once when Lawrence thought she heard intruders in her house, she quickly grabbed her bow and arrow to defend herself. Thankfully, they were just construction workers. The actress has several movies lined up for next year including X-Men: Days of Future Past and Dumb and Dumber.

    Folk tales
    Best known for the movie The Nativity Story, rocker-turned-actor Oscar Isaac has adopted a new style of guitar playing in his music after having to learn the skill for his new film, Inside Llewyn Davis. The former punk star plays the title character in the Coen Brothers’ movie, which is about a struggling folk singer trying to make it in 1960s’ New York. He told New York Magazine, ‘For the movie, I had to learn this way of playing guitar called ‘Travis picking’, where your thumb is like the metronome, and you’re playing the bass line and the melody at the same time. It’s this very tricky, syncopated style of playing, and once I locked in to it, I haven’t been able to get out.’’ The movie won the Grand Prix at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.

    Tough girl
    Best known for her roles in movies like Fantastic Four, Into the Blue and Good Luck Chuck, actress Jessica Alba is famous for her fit physique. The 32-year-old learnt taekwondo for Fantastic Four and other movies, but continued her training to stay in shape and to get her mind and body in control. The quick body movements of taekwondo were essential for her superhero role and also in movies like Machete Kills. The actress who is also known to do her own stunts in her movies has Dear Eleanor and Stretch coming up next year.

    Superhero advantage
    To bulk up for his superhero role in the Batman series, Christian Bale has been training in Wing Chun and is now a full blown Wing Chun Kung-Fu martial artiste. For those not in the know, Wing Chun is a concept-based Chinese martial art and a form of self-defense, specialising in close-range combat. In fact, both Bale and Robert Downey Jr were trained by renowned master, Eric Oram. During an interview, Bale admitted that Wing Chun is simply the best. The actor practises the discipline to keep his body fit and says it helps him mentally. Now, that is what a superhero needs.

    Ride the wave
    In 2009, actress Cameron Diaz told the media that she loves surfing — because it makes her feel “in touch” with God. She had to learn the sport for the movie Charlie’s Angels. The actress, though from California, did not know how to surf and now is a pro at it. “I love it now, though. It’s very spiritual for me. It’s like being directly in touch with God. It’s so healing and amazing,” she had said. Recently, the actress was spotted giving surfing lessons on the beaches of Hawaii. The 41-year-old actress has movies like The Other Woman and Annie coming up.

    — Mrinalini Sundar

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