Christian Bale Heats Up the Screen in 'Out of the Furnace'

The actor spent time working in a steel mill to prepare for his role.
3:00 | 12/06/13

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Transcript for Christian Bale Heats Up the Screen in 'Out of the Furnace'
Christian bale took home an oscar for "the fighter." And he was electrifying as the classic hero, batman. Now, critics are saying he gives one of his best performances ever, playing a working-class hero. In "out of the furnace," he's a steelworker looking for his brother. Take a look. Come back late center. No. It's okay. We're finishing up. Your momma teach you to barge in like that? You got a problem with it? I got a problem with that, buddy. Here is christian bale who plays russell baze. This is a character created by scott cooper, who called this movie a metaphor for america, for everything that happened to it in the last five turbulent years. And I heard you were drawn to this script immediately. Why? It was something that hypnotized me. And the characters were fascinating. The life, the lifestyle, the towns. The town was such an important part of this man's life. You know, his love of his town. Like absolute sincere patriotism. Not the b.S. Patriotism we see so much. And a man who is stoic and resilient to be a patriarch of his family. And what happens when the stoicism is rejected, he rebraces impulses he's had to deny his entire life. And while you were speaking, we saw a scene that moved me so much. You were just released from prison. And your brother played by casey affleck there. Very mu words were spoken in the scene. And the bond and the power of freedom was so moving. What was it like to play that character? You put a lot of work in this. You worked in a steel mill. We did the correct research. I went and learned how to do that. This scene we shot in one take. It was improvised. Casey is a suburb actor. He is a phenomenal actor. It's a very american film. And this director, you don't get better. I had just the best experience working with this man. Crazy hard. He's done "out of the furnace." And you want to look out for what he's doing. And it's a tale of the town, as you mentioned. He was drawn to create the script out of a "new york times" article. The mayor of the town said, we lost 90% of our population. And 90% of our buildings. 90% of our town to landfill. It's an important story to tell of resilience. Absolutely. It's a real story of american character. And the changing times within america. And what this man who has always done the right thing, you know, been there. Been loyal. Loves his town. Loves his family. Had to become a patriarch at a young age. What does he do when he's threatened with the loss of everything he loves. And a phenomenal cast. While doing research for this interview, we actually discovered something that I may have to apologize to you for in advance. But you apparently were here almost 26 years to the date on "gma." Circus december 1987. And I think we have a clip. Okay. It's the first film I've done. And it was weird seeing myself up on the screen. And all these people watching me. I enjoyed being at the premiere. And I quite liked all the cameras. I'm happy to relax at home. Look how cute you were. You were from "empire of the sun," to "moses." Poor, little fella. He didn't know what was going on. You're taking on the role of moses? Yes. I'm playing moses in the book of exodus, with ridley scott. "Out of the furnace" is in theaters today. Christian bale, thank you for joining us and for being a good sport about that old clip. But you were really cute.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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