Mark Wahlberg went on a long rant at the AFI Fest premiere of his newest film Lone Survivor, damning actors who liken working on a film to being in the army.

Lone Survivor, directed by Battleship director Peter Berg, is based on the real life story of Marcus Luttrell, a Navy SEAL who participated in an intense failed mission in 2005 Afghanistan. Wahlberg plays Marcus, along with an all-star cast including Eric Bana, Ben Foster, Emile Hirsch and Taylor Kitsch.

After the AFI screening Nov. 12, the moderator, Festival Director Jacqueline Lyanga, for the Q&A portion of the premiere asked Wahlberg about his training for the film, causing the actor to go into a tirade about his passionate distain for actors who talk about how hard they trained for a film.

Mark Wahlberg's Rant

“For actors to sit there and talk about, ‘Oh, I went to SEAL training’? I don’t give a f—k what you did. You don’t do what these guys did. For somebody to sit there and say my job was as difficult as being in the military? How f—ing dare you, while you sit in a makeup chair for two hours,” Wahlberg replied.

Wahlberg went on, bringing in his co-stars, and saying he sacrificed his salary so that they could hire Foster to play one of the SEAL Team members. “I don’t give a s—t if you get your ass busted. You get to go home at the end of the day. You get to go to your hotel room. You get to order your f—ing chicken. Whatever the f—k it is. People talk about what do we do to bond the way that those guys bonded. We just knew what they did. It didn’t matter. I didn’t have to say a word to Emile or a word to Taylor Kitsch, Ben Foster… who’s my brother even though he’s the kind of actor who wants to continuously debate the debate and everything else… and I love him for it. I gave him half my salary…whatever I gave him… to do it because I knew how great he was and for us to be on that mountain together and in the end I could just look at him and it would break my heart knowing that that’s my brother and I may never see him again. But it just seems like so much more than that.”

Wahlberg was adamant, however, that the scenes in Lone Survivor are as close to an accurate depiction of war as you’re going to get in any film.

“I’ve done the movies where I talk about…’God, I trained for four and a half years and I was The Fighter’ and f—k all that. It really means nothing. I love Marcus for what he’s done and I’m a very lucky guy to do what I do and I’m proud to have been part of it, but it’s just so much bigger than what I do. I love Pete for what he did and how committed he was… He would never let any one of us forget about what was important in the course of making the movie and whether it was Marcus or the other SEAL guys, if they saw something that didn’t ring true, I don’t care if it was going to be the biggest stunt sequence in the movie, they would cut, call bulls—t, and grab all of us by the f—ing neck and say ‘no do it this way, and do it right and make it real’ and if you don’t it’s a problem. I was really proud to be a part of that.”


When Wahlberg finished his speech, he offered up a small apology and asked the moderator not to ask him any more questions, saying, “I’m sorry for losing my s—t. Don’t ask any more questions tonight.”

When Berg tried to give Wahlberg an out, saying that it had been a long night for all of them, Wahlberg stood his ground, insisting, “no, it’s just getting f—ing started. I’m going to find my f—ing second wind and we’re going to celebrate this f—ing movie. But don’t ask me any more questions.”

Hirsch later tweeted a link to Wahlberg’s speech and expressed his support for his co-star and his strong beliefs.

Wahlberg vs. Cruise

When the comments went public, many news outlets began to speculate that Wahlberg wasn’t just bashing a general pool of actors who brag about extensive training for a role, but rather, he was directly responding to comments made by Tom Cruise in which he jokingly compared being an actor to being a soldier due to the time spent away from home and family.

Cruise’s comments were taken out of context from a deposition of his current court case regarding an In Touch cover story claiming he ‘abandoned’ daughter Suri following his divorce from Katie Holmes, and Cruise’s attorney Bert Fields released a statement clarifying the comments:

“The assertions that Tom Cruise likened making a movie to being at war in Afghanistan is a gross distortion of the record. What Tom said, laughingly, was that sometimes ‘that’s what it feels like.’ As the video shows, he and the lawyer were laughing at his answer, and, when asked in the next question if the situations were comparable, Tom said, ‘Oh, come on,’ meaning of course not.

“Tom is a staunch supporter of our troops and would never say that making a movie was even remotely comparable to fighting in Afghanistan.”

When asked directly whether or not his comments were in response to Cruise on Wednesday, Wahlberg said he had no knowledge of the Cruise deposition.

“I didn’t know that it was Tom Cruise who had said that. Somebody had just mentioned that people were comparing [acting and being in the military]. I love Tom Cruise. He’s a great actor. I have the utmost respect for Tom Cruise, but I have the utmost respect for military guys; it’s just unfair for anybody to comment on that,” Wahlberg told TMZ.

Lone Survivor will be in limited release on Dec. 27 and wide release Jan. 10, 2014.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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