Jennifer Jason Leigh is glad her pal Christian Bale has been selected to play BATMAN - because he'll have to gain some weight.

The 41-year-old screen actress, who co-stars with Bale in the upcoming thriller The Machinist, admits she was extremely worried about his welfare while they were making their movie together.

She explains, "Our film is about a guy who hasn't slept for a year, so Christian lost a lot of weight. I think he weighed in less than I did.

"He starved himself. He wouldn't even drink water when we had love scenes.

"When he started to eat again, we warned him, 'Start slow. Eat poached eggs and raw foods.' We watched in horror as he started with donuts."

24/10/2003 09:14