In Bad Boys For Life, we got the long-awaited return of Will Smith’s Mike Lowrey and Martin Lawrence’s Marcus Burnett, but we also got some fresh new faces to the franchise in the form of the AMMO Squad. Among the team’s members is Dorn, a tech expert in the body of a bodybuilder played by Vikings’ Alexander Ludwig. The actor, best known for playing Björn “Ironside” Lothbrok on Vikings, wanted to put on a lot of muscle for the role, so Alexander Ludwig used The Rock’s workout to get jacked, courtesy of Dwayne Johnson himself:
I worked with Dwayne Johnson when I was 16 years old and I haven’t seen him for years. But if there’s anybody to ask about working out or how to get big quick I think he’s probably the right guy to talk to. So I shot him an email and he responded to me with A. a huge congratulations and B. with an entire workout plan.
Vikings is arguably Alexander Ludwig’s breakout role, but he has been acting since he was very young and one of the films he starred in was Disney’s Race to Witch Mountain. That 2009 film starred a teenage Alexander Ludwig, AnnaSophia Robb, Carla Gugino and yes, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, long before he was the biggest movie star on the planet. So, Alexander Ludwig knew exactly who he could reach out to for help to get jacked for Bad Boys For Life.
As Alexander Ludwig told Variety, The Rock seems like he knows a thing or two about working out. Dwayne Johnson has built a career thanks to charisma and his physique and attaining and maintaining that physique is something he works very hard at. And if you’re going to emulate someone, might as well emulate the best. Fortunately for Alexander Ludwig, he had an in with Dwayne Johnson thanks to Race to Witch Mountain.
Alexander Ludwig emailed The Rock and despite the fact that he hasn’t seen or worked with The Rock in a decade-and-a-half, the superstar actually responded, not with just a few tips, but with an entire workout plan. He may not be a formally educated or certified personal trainer, but the proof is in the pudding and you could certainly do worse than having The Rock programming your workouts.
The Rock gave Alexander Ludwig a workout plan to maximize his gains and help the actor get as big as possible as fast as possible for Bad Boys For Life. It’s an incredibly kind gesture from The Rock and really reflects well on him. As busy as he is, he still took the time to help out a younger actor who he hasn’t seen in years for one of his biggest parts yet. Paying it forward, you love to see it.
Alexander Ludwig followed The Rock’s workout plan for the entire shoot and the results speak for themselves onscreen. It was critical to the young actor that he be as big as possible for the role in Bad Boys For Life and that’s why he reached out to The Rock. Speaking about the paradoxical role of Dorn, Alexander Ludwig explained:
I really wanted to do right by him and that character and I knew the only way this joke was really going to work is if I was massive. Because the bigger he was or the more capable of being a beast in the field he was, the funnier it was that he was in the van.
In Bad Boys For Life, Alexander Ludwig’s Dorn is AMMO’s tech expert, the Oracle to Mike and Marcus’ Batman and Robin. His computer skills and personality stand in stark contrast to his physical appearance. Dorn is not the diminutive, bespectacled tech geek you see in so many other action films. Dorn is a giant who you would expect to be out in the field cracking heads. But this giant is a gentle one.
There’s a reason Dorn is the way he is that you find out in the film, but that dichotomy is what makes him a fun character and that’s why Alexander Ludwig wanted to be as jacked as possible for the role. Fortunately, he knew just the guy to ask for help.
Bad Boys For Life is now playing. Check out our 2020 release schedule to keep track of all this year’s biggest movies.