Mark Wahlberg's legendary abs have temporarily departed.
The 49-year-old Oscar-nominated star of The Departed took to Instagram on Monday, May 3 to share photos of himself as he shoots his new film, Stu. The post featured a glimpse at his muscular physique from three weeks ago while wearing boxing shorts, side-by-side with his current look after gaining 20 pounds.
"From this 3 weeks ago, to this, now," Mark wrote. He then sent a message to his chef, Lawrence Duran, by adding, "Thanks to @chef_lawrence_d cooking."
The body transformation led to plenty of responses, including one from the star's wife, Rhea. "And it looks just as hot in person baby [heart emoji]," she commented.
Mario Lopez posted, "Yo. You wear mad chubby well homie!" Meanwhile, Baywatch alum Gena Lee Nolin wrote, "Goes to show us all - we are what we eat! The effort in moving and eating healthy!"
Two days prior, Mark had shared footage of himself in a gym, where he lifted up his shirt and pushed out his growing belly. "Kenny's down 50 and I'm up about 20," Mark wrote about his gym partner. "Inspired to be better! I'm going up another 20. Yes it's for a role."
On April 8, the Ted actor appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and he told host Jimmy Kimmel about the enigmatic real-life character he'll be playing in director Rosalind Ross' forthcoming drama.
"I'm playing a guy who was a fighter—he was many things," Mark explained. "He was a fighter, he moved to L.A. to become an actor, he fell in love with a girl, he had an accident, he had an outer-body spiritual experience, he decided to become a priest. He died of a rare disease, IBM, but he had a big impact on a lot of people in a very short amount of time."
The early part of the shoot required the performer to be in shape for his character's time as a boxer, but Mark, who previously played a pugilist in 2010's The Fighter, was far more excited to get to the later years of the individual's life, which meant Mark could finally let himself go.
"After we do the boxing scenes, I get to put on as much weight as possible over the course of the film, so I'm challenging myself to put on 30 pounds in the next six weeks," he revealed. "They want me to do it as healthy as possible. I'm like, 'Dude, I've been on such a regimen for so long, I just want to eat everything in sight.' I want to go to bakeries, I want to go to Denny's, I want to get pancakes. I want to get everything that I could possibly get my hands on."
When Jimmy asked what Mark planned for his first meal of the hedonistic stretch, the actor said it would include "maybe a 20-piece chicken nugget, hot wings from Kentucky Fried Chicken with a six-pack of beer. Let's start with a bang."
This has been a turbulent past few weeks for Mark, whose mom, Alma Wahlberg, recently passed away at age 78 after battling dementia. "My angel. Rest in peace," he posted to Instagram on April 18, along with a photo of Alma.