Talk about really getting serious for a role.
In her new movie, Adrift, actress Shailene Woodley plays the role of Tami Oldham Ashcraft, a real-life sailor who was stuck at sea for 41 days with very minimal food and water. This means, in order to prepare for the role, Woodley had to basically starve herself toward the end of filming so she really looked thin like Ashcraft did towards the end of her ordeal.
In an interview with The Times, Woodley opened up about her role and how it was really hard for her during the last two weeks of filming because she could only eat a mere 350 calories a day. That means Shailene was only able to eat a can of salmon, some steamed broccoli, and two egg yolks in a day! The actress confessed that she was so hungry before going to bed that she would drink a glass of wine to make herself pass out and forget about the hunger. Pretty sure that she deserves an Oscar just for that.
And during times of intense hunger, Woodley confesses that it was her co-star, Sam Claflin, who got her through it.
“We were working extremely long hours out on the open sea. Sam and I were losing quite a bit of weight as we weren’t eating much. So not having the fuel to run you physically, along with the emotional complexities that were incredibly taxing at times, mixed with the physicality, it could have been a gruelling experience,” she told The Newpaper.
For her role, Shailene also had to learn how to sail. And Tami’s story isn’t for the faint of heart either. According to People, Tami and her fiancé, Richard Sharp, set off on what was supposed to be a dream trip, sailing from Tahiti to San Diego on a ritzy, 44-foot sailboat in 1983. But things took a turn for the worst when the pair hit a hurricane en route to their destination.
The boat ended up capsizing and Tami was badly injured. Unfortunately, Sharp did not survive the ordeal. Tami said that knowing celestial navigation and math helped to save her life. She also recalled how she wouldn’t let herself cry over her beloved fiancé because that would mean that she was losing too much water.
“My water supply was very limited. I just had a big talk with myself. That inner strength to survive is so strong. You just don’t realize it, until you’re put in a really crucial time that you have to survive. It’s amazing what you can do. That just comes from within really. Then keeping your mind active.”
As she approached Hilo, Hawaii, Ashcraft was found by a Japanese research vessel after sending up a flare. At the time of her rescue, she weighed only 100 lbs.
Adrift is currently playing in theaters.