Hilary Swank: Method Actress

Hilary Swank auditioned for the lead role of Teena Brandon in Kimberly Peirce's Boys Don't Cry after hundreds of other actresses had been rejected over the course of three years.

Swank told Peirce that, like Teena, she was twenty-one years old and hailed from Lincoln, Nebraska! Pierce was delighted -- until she learned that Swank was, in fact, nearly twenty-five years old, whereupon she confronted her about the deception. Fortunately, Swank had a ready reply: "That," she said, "is what Brandon would do!"

[Swank won the role, clipped her hair, and lived as a boy for a month to prepare. Her pay for the role? $75 a day.]

[Swank once competed as a swimmer in the Junior Olympics and Washington state championships and was once the state's fifth-ranked gymnast.]

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