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'New Moon' Star Alex Meraz Drops 45 Pounds for New Movie Role

June 16, 2010 (7:48 am) GMT
Playing a Peruvian prisoner in 'The City of Gardens', the actor says he cannot sport a gym body because there was not much food in the '80s.
Alex Meraz

"" star has dropped a scary 45 pounds (20.4 kilograms) to play a surfer wrongly convicted of smuggling drugs into Peru. The actor, who played wolfman Paul in the "" sequel, is almost unrecognizable as Nicaragua in gritty new film "".

Meraz had to shed his musclebound look and lose almost a quarter of his bodyweight to play the surfer in director Camilo Vila's new film, which is based on a real story. The actor tells E! Online, "I didn't want to look like a Ken doll, you know what I mean?. It's a Peruvian prison in the '80s, which is nothing like an American prison. There's not much food. There are definitely no free weights to work out with. So I couldn't have a gym body."

Meraz stopped lifting weights, reduced his meal portions and even went on a juice diet while he was shooting. He adds, "I could see my heart beat through my chest." Meraz admits he's now trying to pack on the pounds again for the "Twilight" franchise's split "Breaking Dawn" films.

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