Christian Bale, star of The Dark Knight trilogy and the new movie Amsterdam, opens up about potentially retiring from acting. Bale has been acting since he was a child, with his first big role being under the guidance of Steven Spielberg in 1987’s Empire of the Sun. As his career progressed, he appeared in films like Newsies and Swing Kids before he went deep into the mind of a killer, leaving an indelible impression on audiences with his twisted performance in American Psycho.
Bale would then go on to play his most recognizable role as Bruce Wayne/Batman in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, beginning in 2005 with Batman Begins. His tenure as Batman made him an in-demand actor, and he would go on to work with several high-profile filmmakers, like David O. Russell, James Mangold, Scott Cooper, and Ridley Scott. Bale’s 2010 role as Dicky Ecklund in The Fighter earned him his first Academy Award nomination and win. He would go on to be nominated another three times for his roles in American Hustle, The Big Short, and Vice, but he didn’t win for those films. Just this year, Bale returned to the realm of superheroes to play the villain Gorr in Thor: Love and Thunder, and he has reteamed with David O. Russell for the new film Amsterdam.
In a recent interview with GQ, Bale mentioned that he would be “More than content” to retire from acting. The 48-year-old elaborated, saying there are interests outside of acting that he would like to pursue, and mentions that he tends to enjoy the stretches where he doesn’t have to pretend to be someone else. Check out Bale’s comments about retirement below:
“More than content: f***ing ecstatic. I’ve always been bent on “When’s this gonna end? This has to end.” I like doing things that have nothing to do with film. And I find myself very happily not playing dress-up, not pretending to be somebody else for long lengths of time.”
Christian Bale’s Approach To Acting May Be Why He Wants To Retire
Bale’s approach to each role may well relate to why the actor seems keen on retirement. He is known to go above and beyond for each role he takes on, with numerous intense examples throughout his career. For The Machinist, the actor dropped down to 110 pounds from a reported starting weight of 173, leaving him dangerously emaciated. Immediately following The Machinist, he then quickly bulked back up for a muscular role in Batman Begins, which is bound to be a shock to the body. He would again lose weight for roles that called for it in Rescue Dawn, where he played a prisoner of war, and The Fighter, where he played a drug addict. Bale has even taken things to the opposite extreme, putting on weight, and even prosthetics, to play Dick Cheney in Adam McKay’s Vice.
Bale also takes his preparation for each role seriously beyond his physical look, meeting real-life people he often portrays, knowing his characters inside and out, and even avoiding other actors who make him break character, much like Chris Rock reportedly did by making him laugh while they filmed Amsterdam. With someone who is willing to give so much to their craft, it seems odd that they would want to be done with it. However, with as much as Bale has poured into each role, his exhaustion with the craft is understandable. Bale is still working, though, with another collaboration with Scott Cooper, The Pale Blue Eye, due out later this year. So while Bale may be ready to retire, his career still looks to be moving forward with new projects.