Actor Mark Wahlberg has dropped 61 pounds (27.7 kilograms) for his new role in The Gambler.

The Lone Survivor star slimmed to just 135 pounds (61.2 kilograms) to play a literary professor with addiction issues in the new film.

He tells People magazine, "I started at 196 and got down to 135... I began with a liquid diet. Then I completely changed my training programme and gave up wine, bread and pasta. Now I'm eating small portions of protein throughout the day and jumping rope a lot."

The Gambler is set to hit theatres next year (15), and could land Wahlberg an Oscar nod - Matthew MCConaughey just won gold for playing an emaciated Aids victim in Dallas Buyers Club.