Mel Gibson told to stop eating for Fatman Santa Claus role

Mel Gibson told to stop eating for Fatman Santa Claus role

Mel Gibson was told to stop eating so he could play Santa Claus.

The 64-year-old actor considered piling on the pounds so he could portray an unorthodox Father Christmas in his new movie 'Fatman' but was told by directing duo Eshom and Ian Nelms that he was already the ideal shape for the role.

He said: "I am reasonably porky. I said to the boys, 'Hey should I eat more ice cream and cookies?'

"But they said, 'No you are perfect. Leave it like that. Just because we call it 'Fatman' does not mean you have to be obese.'"

The 'Braveheart' star added: "Believe me, I have the post-50 years of age insulin gut. Don't worry - I am carrying."

Gibson plays a troubled, boozy Santa in the new movie who has to cope with marriage trouble, a lack of well-behaved children as well as fighting off a hitman sent by an evil 12-year-old child and he revealed how he enjoyed playing Father Christmas from a different perspective.

He told The Sun newspaper: "For me, it was taking an iconic character and examining the reality of who that guy might really be if he had the rest of the problems that most of the world has.

"Like if he had a mortgage to pay, if he's got a sore back, if he's fighting with his wife.

"It examines the humanity of who Santa might be without the big fantasy legend."

Gibson recently explained how he joined 'Fatman' after being "charmed" by the "absurdity" of the script.

He said: "I was charmed by the script. It does have a dark side to it and an absurdity. It definitely travels into the absurd, but I think ... underlying all of it, it has a lot of good heart in it."