Charles Melton underwent a weight gain of 40 pounds to play the role of Joe, a suburban man, in May December. The Riverdale alum enjoyed indulging in ice cream and pizza to put on weight. Charles Melton's weight gain was a joint decision made by him and Todd Hayes who felt that Joe wouldn't have the hunkiness that Melton does.
Charles Melton was a successful model who had worked for Dolce & Gabbana, Kenneth Cole, and MAC before he was an actor. But he has not returned to modeling after he got a taste for acting. His first acting roles, which were guest spots on Glee and American Horror Story, were followed by him being cast as Reggie Mantle in the second season of the CW series Riverdale which catapulted him to mainstream popularity.
Charles Melton later did a starring role of Daniel Bae in his first feature film The Sun is Also a Star and became the first Korean-American and Asian-American actor to headline a teen romance film from a major Hollywood studio. As recent as 2023, he shared the screen with Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore in May December. He had a weight gain of 40 pounds for the drama. Here's everything that's known about his physical transformation!
Charles Melton's Weight Gain: He Gained 40 Pounds for May December!
Charles Melton (@melton) surprised his fans with a significant weight gain of 40 pounds in his latest drama May December starring Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore.
Charles Melton had a weight gain of 40 pounds for May December.
Image Source: People
Todd Haynes-directed drama film May December was released for streaming on Netflix on December 1. The film was great and all but what really has got people talking is Melton's appearance in it. Nobody expected him to look like anything except the Hollywood hunk he is. But, there he was, still very hot but also bulkier in not a muscular way. He had a weight gain for the movie that became a surprise element for a lot of his fans.
However, if they had gone through Charles Melton's interviews from about two weeks ago, they would not have been surprised because he has already talked about the physical transformation he went through for his role in May December. In a conversation with Entertainment Tonight, he revealed that he had gained 40 pounds to play the role of Joe Yoo in the drama. What was his weight gain journey like? Well, he enjoyed putting on weight and indulging as he wished with no concerns about maintaining himself.
I just ate a bunch of Five Guys and pizza and ice cream and Capri Suns and Gushers. I can keep on going. And I really enjoyed myself.
Though Charles Melton did enjoy eating pizza and ice cream as much as he wanted, he never would have indulged like that to put on weight if it wasn't for Todd Haynes. His weight gain for the role was decided on after a discussion with him and Todd. Todd felt as though Joe, the character Melton plays in the movie, would not be a hunk like himself. Thus, it was decided that the Riverdale alum would put on extra weight and have a physical transformation to look the part. As Charles Melton told the outlet,
It was more of a collective discussion with Todd and I. We talked about what Joe would feel like, not so much as look like. Looking at the facts of him being this suburban father with three kids and being a loving husband. He doesn't really have too much time to spend on himself.
Charles Melton Had to Have a Weight Gain to De-Hunk Himself!
Charles Melton had to gain weight to look the part of a suburban man.
Image Source: Los Angeles Times
The way the director Todd Haynes saw it, Charles really could not look the part of Joe without gaining a bit of weight and making it look like he's not been maintaining himself because well, you don't need anyone to spell it out for you that he's this ridiculously handsome man (he used to be a model) who does not resemble a suburban family man. Charles Melton had to have that weight gain for the role or else he wouldn't have gotten it.
Todd was against casting him because of his looks initially because he felt that Melton's blatant hunkiness wasn't appropriate and fitting for the character of a frustrated husband and father.
I'm so grateful Charles Melton came into our consciousness. I didn't know him from Riverdale. His looks were almost a deterrent.
Discussing the reason for transformation, Todd shared that while he thought that Joe would be a good-looking man, he hadn't pictured him [Joe] with the sort of hunkiness and pin-up quality that Melton had. So, he had Charles have a weight gain for the role "to change his chiseled self into something more familiar: a suburban man in this place." He praised Charles Melton for his transformation.
There’s such remarkable physicality in the choices he made as an actor. A friend of mine saw a cut of it, and he said, 'Charles moves like a child and an old man, a combination of the two' — which makes so much sense given his predicament.