The Daniel Wu Diet

by Lynn Chen | Originally posted at The Actor’s Diet

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, most of them captured in New Orleans while he was filming Into the Badlands, a 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, which premiered on Sunday, November 15 at 10pm. Of course, I had to talk to him about food.

Daniel Wu Into The Badlands

On gaining weight for the show: I put on 18 pounds for the role, because normally I’m a pretty slight build and I wanted to put on a bit of muscle for the role.

Filming and Feeding: I did six meals a day prior to filming, and then once we started filming — because of the heat in New Orleans — it was like 90 degrees and 90% humidity, plus I’m wearing a leather trench coat, fighting outside. I was just sweating — I mean cardio beyond, you can imagine. And so I had to have like seven meals a day basically at that point, and so it was horrible because I didn’t enjoy that process. I mean I love eating, but not to that level. I mean every two hours, someone’s going to bring me a full meal to eat while doing a fight scene, and I just packed that down and got back to the fight. It was grueling; it was tough, very difficult.

What he ate on set: It was a protein heavy diet with — definitely heavy carbs because I needed long term energy to be able to keep the stamina up. So it wasn’t a completely fat free diet. There was meat; there was 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. It’s mostly — if I view, like, any of those additions for personal health more than what people see in the — 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’ve 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. 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 — if I like go for a week without training or two weeks without training.

More Diets of Other Actors <—click!

Lynn Chen acts. Sings. Watches an obscene amount of movies and televisionNarrates books. Hosts a podcast. Makes random videos. Plays video games.  Oh, and sometimes actually cooks! Her blog, The Actor’s Diet, started in 2009 and has evolved from a daily food journal into what it is today — everything from LA restaurant reviews/places of interest, to travel and fashion and beauty tips – sprinkled in with random recipes, pictures of her dog, and life on set