December 13th, 2010
09:00 PM ET
Mark Wahlberg packs quite a punch as boxer "Irish" Mickey Ward in "The Fighter" – and we're not just talking about his critically acclaimed performance. According to the actor, those on-screen sparring scenes were the real deal.
"I was really hitting people and they hit back. Hard," Wahlberg tells the Hollywood Reporter. "This wasn't a stylized fight. It was real boxing."
Indeed, Wahlberg – who plays a troubled boxer attempting to become the world's lightweight champion – spent four years prepping for the role, even building a boxing ring in his home and training 8 to 10 hours a day.
"You have to make it real," explains the 39-year-old actor, who also shared with the Hollywood Reporter his key to delivering a knockout film fight.
"The real secret in doing a scene where I was hit in the face was to make sure it was the last shot of the day," Wahlberg said.
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