WATCH: James McAvoy Plays 23 Personalities in His New Movie Split

We applaud actors when they lose themselves in their roles and become totally new human beings. That’s what happened to Heath Ledger as the Joker in The Dark Knight and Christian Bale as Trevor Reznik in The Machinist. The drastic measures they undergo is laudable, but what about when a role calls for an actor to develop 23 personalities?

That’s what James McAvoy did when he signed up for M. Night Shyamalan’s Split, which follows McAvoy as Kevin, who has dissociative identity disorder (previously known as multiple personality disorder). In the movie, he abducts three teenage girls and locks them up at home.

Split will premiere in March 2017.

Watch the trailer below:

Dissociative identity disorder (DID) is a mental disorder where an individual has at least two distinct and relatively enduring identities. Diagnosis is generally difficult as some people use it for financial or forensic gain. DID’s cause is widely-debated, but one of the recurring arguments is that it is developed after severe trauma. There is also a lack of consensus in its treatment.

One of the most prominent cases of DID is of Truddi Chase, an American woman who wrote a book called When Rabbit Howls. She was reported to have 92 personalities, and was featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show and on a TV mini-series.

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