I’ve stayed in shape most of my life, but it’s definitely not without challenge. This week, I saw a photo of actor J.K. Simmons as he prepares for his upcoming Commissioner Gordon role in Zack Snyder’s Justice League film. This dude is 61, and he’s in the gym doing arm curls looking like he could squish Matt Lauer’s head in his biceps like a grape. Okay, before everyone cries, ‘He’s a celebrity! He’s on HGH! He gets paid to be in shape!” consider that it’s J.K. Simmons. It’s not Hugh Jackman, Ben Affleck, or Chris Evans. Oh sure, the man won a much-deserved Academy Award for the 2014 film Whiplash, but he’s still a character actor. Character actors will tell you they fly coach, you know?
I’ll never forget in 2000 when Michael Caine won his second Supporting Actor Oscar for The Cider House Rules. He was complimenting his fellow nominees in the audience, and when he got to Tom Cruise, he joked, “Tom, do you know how much a supporting actor makes?” Supporting actors and actresses are the rocks of the talent industry. They’re the ones who add the seasoning to the main course. They’re the icing on the cake, the Hershey’s syrup on the ice cream!
So, when we see someone like J.K. Simmons busting his butt in the gym and looking like a piece of strip steak, yeah he’s probably got a trainer from the studio helping him out. However, he’s in a gym down the street from you and me, and he ain’t in there with Superman or Batman. He’s in there with a bunch of neighborhood gym rats. A regular Joe? Perhaps not. He’s an Oscar-winning actor who probably gets paid more to sell Farmers insurance on TV than to co-star alongside #TeamJusticeLeague. Regardless, he’s putting in the work. He’s committed to a regimen. He’s disciplined, and he’s a 61 year-old man who looks like he could arm-wrestle a MME fighter. Inspiration comes in many forms. #JKSimmons