2018 Gothenburg Film Festival
The franchise reboot star “worked every muscle” with a fitness and food plan by Hollywood trainer Magnus Lygdback. The results blew up the internet.
“We got some pretty freakish results,” says trainer Magnus Lygdback, who was the mastermind behind Alicia Vikander’s physical transformation to play Lara Croft in Warner Bros.’ Tomb Raider reboot (March 16), which caused a social-media frenzy when images of the Oscar winner in a red bikini in Spain circulated in July.
Vikander, 29, added 16 pounds of muscle to her slender 5-foot-5 frame for the role. Lygdback says he and Vikander didn’t look to the early 2000s franchise star Angelina Jolie for inspiration: “Angelina did a great job, but this is something completely different from the original movies.” Instead, they focused on the physicality that the Swedish-born actress and trained ballet dancer would need to perform acrobatic stunts, from diving off of boats to free climbing in caves. “It’s a modern Lara Croft, a strong, independent woman, and I think it’s exactly what the world needs right now,” says Lygdback.
Seven months before shooting, Vikander followed the trainer’s Magnus Method lifestyle plan beloved by star clients Katy Perry and Britney Spears and designed to boost metabolism and build muscle. The plan emphasizes eating every three hours, no sugar in any form and no “fast” carbs (like in 17 out of every 20 meals).
Mixed martial arts, rock climbing and archery were integrated into Vikander’s training, which also included up to seven days a week in the gym. Four months before production, Lygdback, 38, a former ice hockey player who also hails from Sweden, had Vikander focus on two workout and diet cycles: “building up” muscle for two months, then “cutting” for visual definition for two months. “Alicia is an amazingly hard worker,” says Lygdback. “The hardest part for her was when I would force her to take a day off to recover.”
ALICIA VIKANDER’S FOOD PLAN
Build-Up Cycle: Meals had 40 grams protein, 40 grams carbs and 30 grams fat; snacks had 30 grams proteins. Drinks: water, beetroot-lemon-ginger shots and veggies juices with fruit.
Breakfast: 4 eggs in any form (such as an omelet or a fritatta with vegetables, or poached); Half avocado; Coffee
Snack 1: All snacks are protein-centered (examples: beef or chicken skewers, sashimi, or grilled octopus)
Lunch: 40 grams beef, chicken or fish; 40 grams slow carbs (such as brown rice, quinoa, barley, yams or sweet potato); 30 grams good fat used in cooking, dressing or as a garnish (examples: coconut oil, olive oil, avocado)
Snack 2: Same options as snack 1
Dinner: 40 grams protein; 40 grams slow carbs; 30 grams good fat; No alcohol allowed
Cutting Cycle: Breakfast consisted of 18 to 20 grams protein; lunch and dinner contained 25 grams protein and 50 grams good fat. A snack could have 20 grams protein. Same beverages.
Breakfast: 3 poached eggs; A shot of juice from two lemons
Snack 1: Fish, shellfish or eggs
Lunch: Fish or shellfish; Good fat, including avocado, coconut oil, or medium-chain triglyceride oil (MCT)
Snack 2: Same options as Snack 1
Dinner: Fish or shellfish; Good fat; No alcohol
Alicia Vikander attends The 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 7, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California.
75th Annual Golden Globe Awards
Alicia Vikander will be picking up a bow and arrow to play Lara Croft in the upcoming Tomb Raider movie reboot next year, but she’s very aware that she’s not the first actress to take on the role of the iconic video game character.
Talking to our sister publication Total Film magazine, Vikander talked about Angelina Jolie’s version and how her Lara Croft will differ. “[Angelina] made that an iconic role,” says Vikander. “I knew we wouldn’t be able to redo that, and that’s not what we’re trying to do either. We go back to the beginning, and tell the origin story.”
At the beginning of the 2018 movie, Lara’s backstory has dispensed with the privilege and butlers, and she now works for a bicycle courier company and lives in a communal space while she figures out what she wants to do with her life. It certainly marks a change of pace from the 2001 movie, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, and its risible 2003 sequel, The Cradle of Life. “What I like is that there will be a lot of young people, a lot of girls, who feel like they can relate to her,” Vikander continues. “She’s trying to figure out her path in life, who she is, and what her history is.” Director Roar Uthaug adds that his main goal was “to make the audience care about Lara Croft and invest in her as a real character.”
As Bulgari ambassador Alicia Vikander attended the opening of the “fifth jewel” in the brand’s luxury hotel offering this week – a Dubai resort on its own island incorporating residences, mansions and a yacht marina – we caught up with the Oscar-winning actress to get a 360 view on her beauty, style and dream role.
On her flawless skin
“For events I do use make-up but normally I don’t. I might use a bit of eyebrow pencil and a lipstick but nothing else. I think it’s one of the things I’ve been very lucky with. Because I don’t use much make-up I do find it fun to try things. I have my little skincare routine – I do masks and a peel two or three times a week.”
On no-make-up make-up
“At the beginning, I guess because I don’t use make-up normally, it was very difficult and you need to work with someone who understands how to use make-up so that it still feels like it’s you. And for a lot of press events it’s like non make-up make-up so that I don’t look like I’m wearing it but I also don’t look like a ghost!”
On packing light
“I’m getting more and more sparse with clothes. I’m actually pretty good at travelling light now. I still have three bags but it’s because I like to have things divided and know where things are. So I have one for shoes and then clothes it’s like two pairs of jeans, two T-shirts, two dresses, all in black – very Scandinavian and Swedish! It’s just easy.”
On her dream role (and Egyptian mythology)
“All the parts I’ve enjoyed playing the most I didn’t know about until they appeared, or it was something I read and fell in love with. I was so excited at the Abu Dhabi Louvre because as a kid I was obsessed with Egyptian mythology and I saw the statue of Ramesses II. I read Ramesses books when I was like 10, I loved it. Cleopatra is one of the historical characters that I find very interesting and read about her a lot… so maybe her.”
“Jewellery is a way of making a very simple outfit something you can wear to go out. You gather throughout the years things that even if they aren’t valuable they mean something to you and have a story behind them, which makes my outfits maybe a bit more personal, when normally I keep things pretty simple.”
On working with a stylist
“I now work with Victoria [Sekrier] who is incredible and we were really just friends first. I was at a dinner with the girlfriend that introduced us to one another a few years back and I had done all my styling until then, and I actually had good relationships with brands because I used to do the weird thing of calling up the fashion houses and saying, “Oh I’m going to this event and I need a dress” and they were like, “That’s not how we normally do this” but then they were very kind! Maybe because of the personal connection. That was the year before the Oscars and I had a lot of films coming out and it was just too much to find something for all of them. Victoria knows me very well and then I get to do the final pick.”
On downtime dressing
“It’s just black really, black trousers and I love knits. That’s something I’m obsessed with. I’m moving house and I actually don’t have that much stuff. I give a lot to charity when it comes to clothes. But knits I tend to keep, I hoard them!”