When Christian Bale describes his latest role as the most extreme character Ive ever played, its enough to make you sit up and take note. After all, this is the actor who played manicured maniac Patrick Bateman in American Psycho, and Bale has made a career of playing characters for whom extreme is a barely sufficient descriptor. There arent many actors who can sell you on the idea that a multi-billionaire might be sufficiently driven and borderline-psychotic to dress up as a bat and spend his nights taking on the criminal underworld, but it's all in a day's work for Bale. Indeed, extreme is almost second nature for an actor who has become known for changing his body shape like others change their hairstyle. Audiences have grown accustomed to Bale shape-shifting from emaciated to muscular to pudgy as the roles require, but don't make the mistake of belittling his sacrifices: not so long ago, the actor railed at a journalist's reference to his "trademark weight loss" and expressed his desire to "p*ss on that guy's shoes." Bale's latest film Exodus: Gods and Kings has already opened in a number of territories across the globe and arrives in UK cinemas this week. Ridley Scotts bible-based epic sees the actor take on the extreme role of Moses as he leads the exodus of the Hebrews from Egypt after a vision of God, and while some reviews have been fairly scathing, Bale has emerged with his impressive credentials intact. Over the years Bale has developed a reputation for being fiercely protective of his private life and having an explosive temper. However, although Bale may at times come across as guarded in interviews, hes never less than entertaining. Plenty of interesting details and titbits have emerged over the years, so read on to find out more about one of the worlds most gifted actors.