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Shia LeBeouf Is Straight Method, But Is He As Method As Daniel Day-Lewis?: A Pajiba Investigation

By Jodi Smith | Industry | December 1, 2014 |

By Jodi Smith | Industry | December 1, 2014 |

I know we’ve all heard Shia LaBeouf method acting shenanigans. Recently, LaBeouf himself laid out the insane path he followed for the movie Fury:

“David told us right from the gate: ‘I need you to give me everything.’ So the day after I got the job, I joined the US National Guard. I was baptised - accepted Christ in my heart - tattooed my surrender and became a chaplain’s assistant to Captain Yates for the 41st Infantry. I spent a month living on a forward operating base. Then I linked up with my cast and went to Fort Irwin. I pulled my tooth out, knifed my face up and spent days watching horses die. I didn’t bathe for four months.” - Dazed

I don’t know whether to be more disturbed by the tooth pulling or the face knifing. They’re both so batsh*t insane when prosthetic pieces can take their place. I mean, he’s no Daniel Day-Lewis…is he?

In My Left Foot, Day-Lewis spent time with cerebal-palsy patients. He insisted on being carried while filming and refused to leave his wheelchair. His slumped posture led to two broken ribs and an Oscar for Best Actor.

LaBeouf asserts that he was fired from the play Orphans because “Alec and I butted heads hard. I was sleeping in the park . . . At the time, I was out of my mind. My whole goal was to intimidate the fuck out of Baldwin. That was the role. And it wasn’t going to be fake. I wanted him to be scared . . . So I went about doing that for three weeks of rehearsal.” He didn’t win any awards, but he got arrested later that year.

Advantage: Day-Lewis


Day-Lewis sunk himself into the title role for Lincoln, refusing to drop his American accented voice. He also avoided people with British accents, afraid it may compromise his Lincoln voice, and also had people refer to him as Commander in Chief and Mr. President. He won an Oscar for Best Actor.

LaBeouf actually went to the Bone Zone with his co-star in Lars Von Trier’s Nymphomaniac. He lost his then-girlfriend and gained new girlfriend Mia Goth.

Advantage: Day-Lewis


For the film Last of the Mohicans, Day-Lewis only ate animals he killed himself with a flintlock rifle. He spent time learning to track and skin animals and fight with tomahawks. He was nominated for a BAFTA.

In Lawless, LaBeouf got drunk on moonshine. He was also overly aggressive, like his character, and Mia Wasikowska nearly walked from the flick. He also gained 40 pounds. LaBeouf got to be close to Tom Hardy and probably smell him and touch him in passing for the entirety of the shoot.

Advantage: LaBeouf


There you have it. Scientific proof that Shia LaBeouf is no Daniel Day-Lewis, but that the pair are both willing to suffer for their art. One of them is just better at keeping that suffering to themselves.

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Jodi Smith is a Senior Reporter, Film & Television at Pajiba. You can email her or follow her on Twitter.