You heard it here first folks, Conan the Barbarian used to get stuffed into lockers. Okay, okay, I’m joking, but Jason Momoa, the actor who will be playing the legendary warrior in Marcus Nispel’s 2011 film, did get his fair share of bullying when he was younger.

In a wide-ranging interview with the Des Moines Register, Momoa talks about his experiences growing up as a “little hippy kid from Iowa,”  his introduction to Hollywood as a cast member of Baywatch, and his thoughts on taking up the legendary mantle of Arnold Schwarzenegger to play the mighty Conan.

While the article is chock full of interesting details about Momoa’s life (enough to make even the most ardent Momoa-haters sort of like the guy), we here at Screen Rant are most interested in details on Conan‘s progress. To this end, the article featured a number of interesting new nuggets to pore over.

When Momoa was first cast in the role, one of the big criticisms from fanboys was that he didn’t have the right build to play the “almost inhumanly strong” Conan. Of course, Hollywood generally has no problem in beefing up actors quickly, which is exactly what is happening with Momoa.

Quoting from the article:

He [Momoa] expects to add 10 more pounds of muscle to his frame with help of David Leitch, a stunt performer seen in “The Bourne Ultimatum” and Chad Stahelski, the martial arts stunt coordinator for “The Matrix Reloaded” and “The Matrix Revolutions.”

Additionally, Momoa is enrolled in an “intense six-week training program at a stunt and martial arts academy” where he is learning the fine art of smashing skulls with a 10 lb sword. Beyond the character’s physicality, Momoa also talked about how he sought to get into the mind of Conan by re-reading the source material, namely the original books by author Robert E. Howard.

While these new details may not be enough to convince Conan fans that Momoa is the right man for the role, I happen to think that he’ll do a pretty good job. At the very least, with Mickey Rourke in the running to play Conan’s father, and Avatar bad guy Stephen Lang cast as Conan’s main adversary Khalar Singh, we know that Momoa will have a good supporting cast to work with on what is shaping up to be one of 2011’s more exciting films.

What do you think? As Conan comes together, are you comfortable with Momoa in the lead role?

Currently, there is no release date for Conan, though the film is expected to hit theaters next summer.

Source: Des Moines Register