Zac Efron Apparently Got 'Muscly' Again. Lily James Talks The Distraction Of Working With Him On Set

Zac Efron became a superstar thanks to the High School Musical franchise, growing into an accomplished actor and sex symbol right before the public’s eyes. The 35 year-old actor is known for being super ripped, although he goes through cutting and bulking seasons. Efron got super muscly again for A24’s upcoming sports drama The Iron Claw, and his co-star Lily James has spoken about the distraction of working with him on set. Hey, muscles can be distracting!

In the years Zac Efron has spent as a public figure, folks are often making comments about his appearance. That includes online rumors about plastic surgery, which he personally had to refute with tales of a harrowing accident. While he has been open about how he got overly ripped for Baywatch, he had to bulk up to play professional wrestler Kevin Von Erich in The Iron Claw. Lily James is also in that movie, and recently spoke to The Sun about filming with Efron in that state, saying:

[He had] a great bowl cut, but he was also incredibly muscly which was slightly more distracting. But what was more incredible is his performance, he has really transformed.

Talk about the power of hair and make-up… as well as tons of hours at the gym. The set photos of Zac Efron in The Iron Claw that are circulating online show just how spot-on he looks as Kevin Von Erich. And as such, you can’t blame Lily James from sometimes getting distracted while acting opposite the Firestarter actor in full regalia. 

Professional wrestlers are known for being absolutely massive, and Zac Efron seemingly took this responsibility very seriously prior to and during filming for The Iron Claw. He made a huge physical transformation, gaining a ton of muscle in order to play the real-life wrestling figure. You can see just how big Efron was looking in the role thanks to a post from the movie shared on his Instagram account. Check it out below:

A post shared by Zac Efron (@zacefron) (opens in new tab)

A photo posted by on

Holy flying Efron. Not only is Zac Efron going to look the part as Kevin Von Erich in The Iron Claw, it also looks like he’s going to be putting those muscles to use in the movie’s wrestling sequences. A24 has built up a stellar representation lately thanks to acclaimed projects like The Whale and Everything Everywhere All at Once, both of which are Awards Season favorites this year. Could this upcoming drama be the opportunity for this type of recognition for Efron? Only time will tell.

As previously mentioned, Zac Efron has likely become somewhat used to fielding questions about his appearance. Fans theorized online that he might have gotten plastic surgery, with the chatter getting so loud that he had to address them personally. And that’s apart from the ongoing discourse about how he ripped he is at any point.

The Iron Claw doesn’t currently have a concrete release date. Be sure to check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.