An interview with actor Daniel Wu about his diet and exercise regime while filming the new AMC show Into the Badlands.
Oh, how I love when my fellow actors post photos of food, especially when they’re on set. The yumminess below is from Daniel Wu’s Instagram feed. He photographs most of them in New Orleans while filming Into the Badlands. This is AMC’s new Martial Arts TV Show, very loosely based on the classic Chinese tale, “Journey to the West.”
Daniel stars as “Sunny” in this new AMC Original six-episode series, premiering this Sunday, November 15th at 10pm. Of course, I have to talk to him about food.
On gaining weight for the show: I gain 18 pounds for the role, because normally I’m a pretty slight build. And I want to put on a bit of muscle for the role.
Filming and Feeding: I do 6 meals a day prior to filming. The heat in New Orleans – it is like 90 degrees and 90% humidity. Plus I’m wearing a leather trench coat, fighting outside. I am just sweating. Cardio beyond, you can imagine. And so I have like 7 meals a day basically at that point. And it is horrible because I don’t enjoy that process. I mean I love eating, but not to that level. Every 2 hours, someone’s bringing me a full meal to eat while I’m doing a fight scene. And I just pack that down and get back to the fight. It is grueling. It is tough, very difficult.
What he eats on set: It is a protein heavy diet with heavy carbs. Because I need long term energy to be able to keep the stamina up. So it isn’t a completely fat free diet. There is meat; there is fat. And sort of energy storage for the endurance part.
On feeling the pressure to look a certain way: I’ve never had any kind of like issues with my body or how I look. I think because on my own, I love to train, I love to work on martial arts. I love to do any kind of sport activity. So it’s not a pressure that I feel from the industry. It’s just something that’s my nature. But I don’t NOT eat stuff because I’m afraid of this or that. I view any of those additions for personal health more than what people see or require of me.
Daniel’s every day workout routine: Luckily I’ve been in good shape this whole time from the very beginning. And even though I’ve torn an ACL, I’ve broken my legs, all that kind stuff, I still keep at doing that stuff. So when I’m either filming a martial arts show or not, I’m still exercising. Because it’s part of my life. I mean I’ve been doing martial arts since I was 11-years-old. It’s been a lifestyle thing for me now and I can’t not train. It makes me feel weird if don’t – I feel super low energy if I don’t.