News Roundup: Lang interview, Jason’s workout, casting, and posters

The fallout from Comic-Con has mostly settled, but there are a few snippets left to go around.

The Sioux City Journal has an interview with Stephen Lang, where his role as Khalar Zym comes up:

LOS ANGELES — You want bad guys? Call Stephen Lang. He’s an expert.

Thanks to an unrelenting role in “Avatar,” Lang has become the go-to bad guy for directors.

“Yeah, I’ve played a few,” he says with a laugh. “But this guy isn’t necessarily one of them.” The character he’s referring to is the explorer who leads others from a ruined Earth to a prehistoric one in “Terra Nova.” “He’s a righteous guy. But he’s not necessarily a bad guy.”

But Khalar Zym, the character he plays in the new “Conan the Barbarian” film? “He’s bad. He’s death — an evil warlord. And it was fun.”

For more, click on, Macduff.

The rest of the interview delves into Lang’s career, with just a few bits and pieces on Khalar and Conan:

The trick to playing bad? “It’s just tapping into stuff,” Lang says. “We’ve all got the ability. I’m just fortunate. I got to do it beyond the age of 11.”

“Since then, there have been many, many villains. If you have to go down as something, there are worse things you could be. I’d rather play that than the druggist on the corner.”

His turn as Col. Miles Quaritch in “Avatar” cemented his reputation, then led to the remake of “Conan.”

Shot in Bulgaria, the film was “very colorful, very low-tech. The ‘300’ fight team was there and we had an imaginative director. (As Conan), Jason Momoa was spectacularly good…he’s a real stud…and I enjoyed beating the hell out of him.”

People.com’s Newswire has a picture and a short piece on Jason Momoa’s workout routine for the new film, mostly what we already know, with a few extra details:

Getting in shape for the lead role in the remake of Conan the Barbarian was no easy task for Jason Momoa.

The Honolulu-born Game of Thrones actor and model endured a grueling 6-hour daily exercise regimen to play the iconic action hero played onscreen in the ’80s by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

“We do two hours of sword work first … then have a little break, eat a broiled chicken, do two hours of weight lifting and have cardio,” Momoa, 31, told reporters at a Comic-Con event in San Diego. “Then I’d go home and basically the best thing I could do is sleep and rest.”

The routine helped the 6’4″ actor bulk up from 210 to 230 pounds.

“His diet consisted of basically chicken breast and peanut butter,” producer Fredrik Malmberg said. “Peanut butter for energy on set because you burn a lot of calories … and not to lose the muscle and the mass that he built up.”

When the film’s shooting finally wrapped – the finished version opens in 3-D on Aug. 19 – Momoa hightailed it to Italy for some serious carb therapy.

“I flew straight to Rome and just [ate] pasta,” Momoa said.

And it was a long time coming. “During the last week of shooting, all Jason was talking about was the amount of food he was going to consume as soon as it was over,” said his leading lady, Rachel Nichols, who plays Tamara in the film.

When Momoa returned to the small screen to portray Khal Drogo on HBO’s fantasy hit Game of Thrones, the actor put on another 10 pounds – this time of fat.

“I wanted to put fat on top of it so that [Drogo] would be seven feet tall and really, really big, because he’s not sitting around doing sit-ups,” Momoa says of his current build.

How’d he do it?

Said Momoa, “I just ate Guinness [Stout] and pizza.”

Entertainment Weekly has a tiny piece, where Marcus Nispel talks about the casting process (already seen in Empire, but for those who missed it):

How do you outdo Arnold Schwarzenegger as the sword-swinging, leather-thonged Cimmerian? For advice, director Marcus Nispel turned to John Milius, who helmed the 1982 original and suggested he start his search in Iraq. ”So we actually looked in Iraq,” says Nispel. ”We looked in Russia. We looked everywhere. Then we found Jason [Momoa, of Stargate Atlantis] in California literally four minutes from where I live.” Seems that big-screen barbarians are always in the last place you look.

Finally, Lionsgate show their charitable side, as autographed posters of the upcoming film are auctioned for charity:

In other news, Lionsgate is auctioning off autographed posters from Conan the Barbarian to benefit the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. They’re offering up for bid five character poster packages signed by Jason Momoa, Rachel Nichols, Rose McGowan and Stephen Lang, with the auction running today through August 4th. For more information, check out the auction on eBay.

Huzzah for another day.