There are plenty of actors and actresses with athletic abilities and chiseled bodies who look like they should really be out on a field or court rather than acting like they are.
It doesn’t take an active imagination to guess that the likes of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Terry Crews and Carl Weathers actually spent some time competing in various sports, but some of these names may surprise you.
Here are the Hollywood hot shots who also stood in the sports spotlight.
Smokey and the Bandit, Deliverance, The Longest Yard, Boogie Nights … Yeah, Burt Reynolds is a legend. The craziest part about this Hollywood hunk’s unbelievable career is that it may have never even existed had it not been an unfortunate twist of fate during his playing days in college with the Florida State Seminoles.
Reynolds was a star football player in growing up in Florida. An outstanding high school career earned him numerous scholarships, but he chose to play at Florida State.
A standout halfback, Reynolds aspired to go pro until a knee injury in his sophomore season and car accident later that year left him with the difficult decision to pursue another passion.
The quickest way to a man’s heart is with Chuck Norris’s first. Watching anything involving the high-kicking martial artist – the star of the Walker, Texas Ranger series amongst a list of action movies – without dropping a Chuck Norris “facts” is borderline unacceptable. These jokes aren’t simply rooted in his various acting roles, however.
Norris isn’t just some martial arts practitioner, he is a full-on guru. Earning a black belt in any discipline is a remarkable accomplishment. Norris has a collection: 9th degree black belt in Tang Soo Do, 8th degree black belt in taekwondo, 5th degree black belt in karate, 3rd degree black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and black belt in judo.
Oh yeah, he also invented the martial art Chun Kuk Do.
Terry Crews and his titanium armor-looking body makes for a sight that evokes the same thought in all of us regarding his athletic endeavors, “It’d be a real shame if he didn’t use that blow up some opponents.”
Before Crews was laying down the law in blockbusters like The Expendables series and hit sitcoms like Everybody Hates Chris and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, he was laying out running backs and quarterbacks at the college and pro level.
Crews won a MAC championship during his time at Western Michigan before seeing action at the NFL level with the Rams, Chargers and Redskins.
The one fun fact that we can all pin on Sean Connery is that he likes his martinis shaken, not stirred. Okay, that was his James Bond character. So, what do we know about the actual person and not just actor Sean Connery? It turns out he’s pretty much an action hero in real life too.
A young Connery used to make the world swoon for more than his Bond-like charm. He was a competitive bodybuilder! That’s right, Connery’s physique was so impressive that he competed in the famous Mr. Universe competition. That piece of personal information leaves us shaken, not stirred.
Phil Robertson’s name did not become a household one until his later years thanks to the success of his A&E reality show, Duck Dynasty. It’s remarkable how full circle Robertson’s journey came, as the eccentric hunter’s decision to not pursue his shot at fame to continue hunting eventually led to his success.
The lifelong Louisianan played quarterback for Louisiana Tech on scholarship. Better yet, the starting QB was playing ahead of Steelers legend and future Pro Football Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw.
Craziest of all, Robertson was reportedly offered a shot at playing for the Washington Redskins, but chose not to because it’d get in the way of his hunting!
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
If there was a human version of the Swiss Army knife, the prototype would be Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Whatever Dwayne Johnson (the actor) touches turns to gold, which is like sitting through a full movie credits’ worth of just his name. But he was fast and furious on the football field, as well.
Johnson got his big break wrestling in the WWF/WWE as “The Rock,” but his resume as an athlete dates back further. The Rock first began tossing bodies around as a football player and was a part of the iconic Miami Hurricanes 1991 National Championship team before a very brief stint in the CFL.
Jim Gaffigan is first and foremost a stand-up comedian, but his countless film cameos and television appearances make him more than qualified to make the cut as an actor. But we cannot believe this funny man had his fair share of success as a college football player in the Big Ten.
Gaffigan first attended Purdue and was talented enough to get a spot on the Boilermakers roster as a walk-on. After one year, Gaffigan transferred to Georgetown where he finished his collegiate football career with the Hoyas.
How Hot Pockets never signed him as their upside-down Wheaties spokesman is truly a mystery.
Andre The Giant
If you weren’t a big fan of wrestling, the first time you saw Andre The Giant was probably in ‘The Princess Bride’ as Fezzik alongside actors, Mandy Patinkin and Cary Elwes. He played the gentle giant character with comedic relief, which of course came easy for Andre because that’s exactly who he was in real life.
As an athlete, Andre the Giant was the “Eighth Wonder of the World”. He is a legend in the wrestling industry as the first big man, and as the man that Hulk Hogan would triumph over in what would be considered the first David and Goliath style storyline.
As the crow flies, but as the Sheryl hurdles. Sheryl Crow is an accomplished musician who has won nine Grammy awards and sold over 50 million albums worldwide. She also gained a new level of fame for her high-profile relationship with disgruntled cyclist Lance Armstrong. But before she was rocking out on stages around the globe, Crow was flying high as a member of her track team.
At Kennett High School in Missouri, Crow was an all-state track star, medaling in the 75-meter low hurdles. While standing on the podium, Crow was sure to soak up some sun and the glory that comes with gold.
Emma Watson stole all of our hearts as Hermione Granger in the big screen adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter literary series. Of course, Watson wasn’t just acting like a smarty pants on the screen. She demonstrated her brainiac abilities by earning her bachelor’s degree at the prestigious Ivy-League school, Brown University.
Not only did Watson pull off the impressive feat of earning a college degree between her various acting roles, she played collegiate field hockey! The thought of an international star like Watson even having time to even attend a game as a fan seems improbable let alone competing with a one-sided hockey stick.
Matthew Perry, one of the stars of the iconic sitcom, Friends, graced the screens as Chandler Bing for a decade. Besides for his role as Bing, Perry also starred in the TV series Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, and played in a few films including, Fools Rush, The Whole Nine Yards, and 17 Again. What’s more, he even did some voice-over gigs for video games.
A younger Perry not only played tennis competitively, he was nationally ranked! Perry was ranked as high as No. 17 in junior singles and No. 3 in junior doubles. The Ottawa native would reportedly put in up to 10 hours of practice a day! But as a tennis pro, Perry never went the Whole Nine Yards.
Jason Lee is known to many as the mustachioed star of the hit television series My Name is Earl, while others know him from roles in ‘90s and ‘00s cult classic films like Mallrats. Before any of that, Lee first made a name for himself shredding.
Lee’s passion for skateboarding is understandable, considering his Southern California roots based out of Huntington Beach. Skateboarding wasn’t just a passion, he was a legit pro skater through the ‘80s and early ‘90s with some serious moves.
His recurring roles in Kevin Smith’s “View Askewniverse” somehow makes much more sense knowing about his skater roots.
All right, so by no means should it come as any sort of surprise that Dolph Lundgren also has a history as an athlete. His iconic character as the larger-than-life Soviet boxer Ivan Drago in Rocky IV presents all the evidence we need.
Lundgren, who is also famously known to have earned a master’s degree in chemical engineering – more brains and brawn than we can handle – is a third dan (sandan) black belt in Kyokushin karate. That’s not all. Lundgren set the bar in Kyokushin during his peak as a 2-time European champion (1980-81) and Australian champion (1982).
Eat your heart out Homer Simpson, Ed O’Neill is the ultimate king of the couch TV dad. Before O’Neill’s fatherly role in Modern Family, he was the lovable loser living in his high school football glory days as Al Bundy on Married… with Children. What makes O’Neill’s role as a bitter shoe salesman, nostalgic of his “peak” years as an All-State quarterback for Polk High even better is that he was a legit stud on the gridiron!
O’Neill was talented enough at football in high school to earn a football scholarship to Ohio University.
After transferring to Youngstown State and finishing out his collegiate career as a defensive lineman, the Pittsburgh Steelers signed O’Neill as an undrafted free agent in 1969, though he was cut during training camp.
Enjoying crazy fight scenes in action movies and actually participating in real life hand-to-hand combat are two very different things. For that reason, those less familiar with the whole “fighting for realsies” MMA thing may not know that Haywire and Deadpool star Gina Carano also professionally competed in combat sports.
Carano’s incredible 12-1-1 kickboxing record and 7-1 MMA record made her more than qualified to compete as the gladiator “Crush” on the TV series, American Gladiators. Whether it be in the octagon or on the big screen with Ryan Reynolds, Carano is a certified star wherever she takes her talents.
Joel McHale developed into a big-time celebrity as the host of the wildly popular pop culture review show, The Soup. As for his acting chops, adoring fans most notably know him for his star role as Jeff Winger in the NBC hit comedy Community.
McHale has shed his shirt in various scenes, showing that he’s not only tall, but pretty fit too. Well, it turns out he’s more than just “pretty fit,” as McHale was a talented enough rower to be recruited out of high school.
Instead, McHale chose to join his friends at the University of Washington and put his 6’4” frame to use as a walk-on tight end with the Huskies.
Aside from being an actor, producer, screenwriter, and musician, Steven Seagal had started his Hollywood journey in a more unique industry – martial arts.
For 15 years Seagal spent his life in Asia studying Eastern philosophy and choreographing martial arts scenes for films before moving to Hollywood.
After returning to the United States, Seagal opened his own martial arts academy and became a bodyguard for Hollywood celebrities. Eventually his ability to mix martial arts and film production gave Seagal a gateway into the film industry as an actor, landing him his first role in the 1988 film, Above The Law.
Tom Selleck’s acting career is about as diverse as it gets, as the heartthrob acted in widely popular shows and movies like Magnum, P.I. to Friends to Three Men and a Baby. Selleck’s 6’4” frame also served him well on the court as a basketball player.
Selleck’s high school play was good enough to earn him a scholarship to USC where he would go on to play two seasons with the Trojans.
Though he didn’t much playing time, the fact that he managed to balance playing basketball, joining a fraternity and working as a model while earning a business degree is just plain ridiculous.
Joe Rogan is a stand-up comedian also known for his tenure as the UFC’s animated commentator. Others simply know Rogan as “the Fear Factor guy” or as Joe Garelli from the hit ‘90s sitcom, NewsRadio. For those who only know Rogan’s body of work outside the UFC, there’s good reason that this comic commentates fights.
Before earning black belts in no-gi and gi jiu-jitsu as an adult, Rogan grew up training and competing in taekwondo competitions. He was a four-time Massachusetts state champion and winner of the 1987 taekwondo U.S. Open Championships at age 19!
After a brief run at amateur kickboxing, Rogan turned to metaphorically killing on stage rather than literally dropping bodies on floors.
David Duchovny has starred in a plethora of great films and television shows, though he is most widely known for his Golden Globe performances as Fox Mulder on the out-of-this-world smash hit The X-Files, Californication and the 1990 cult classic, Twin Peaks.
Before Duchovny established himself as an acting phenom, he was flaunting his talents on the hardwood. Duchovny was the captain of his high school basketball team before playing for the JV team at Princeton.
Fun fact: Duchovny desperately wanted to play Woody Harrison’s character, Billy Hoyle, in White Men Can’t Jump and even auditioned for the part.
Uzo Aduba may play her part as Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren on Orange is the New Black almost a little too well, because it is just plain hard to picture her being, well, anything but crazy.
Before Aduba embarked on her career in theatre and film, however, her focus was on sports.
Aduba was an incredible sprinter and one of Boston University’s top talents, running the 55, 100 and 200-meter dash. For a little perspective on just how fantastic her time at BU was, she had a personal best of 7.07 seconds in the 55-meter dash– that’s only .04 seconds shy of the school record.
Don’t let the unassuming stature and quiet demeanor of Brooklyn’s Tony Danza fool you. America’s beloved star of Taxi and Who’s the Boss? only broke out onto the acting scene after he was discovered … in a boxing gym. Boxing wasn’t just Danza’s hobby, it was his profession.
Hollywood’s 5’9” Italian Stallion was the real deal in the ring. Before turning to acting, Danza sported a 9-3 record as a pro with all but two of his wins coming in the first round!
The only tough part about playing a taxi driver and boxer in Taxi was that his character wasn’t very good.
Spike Lee’s 1998 film, He Got Game, starred NBA sharpshooter and first-ballot Hall of Famer Ray Allen. While Denzel Washington played the supporting role as the father of Jesus Shuttlesworth (Allen), many may not be aware that this was far from Washington’s first experience hooping with some real deal ballers.
Washington had some legit skills on the basketball court himself. In fact, when the New York native was attending Fordham University, he played for the Rams’ junior varsity basketball team under future Golden State Warriors coach P.J. Carlesimo. Washington played two seasons (1972-74), boasting an 18-1 record in his sophomore season.
Tommy Lee Jones
Tommy Lee Jones has been in enough action and western movies for 10-15 lifetimes, but long before he was kicking alien butt Men in Black style with Will Smith, or tracking down the Fugitive, he was putting whooping human butt on the gridiron as a member of the Harvard Crimson football team.
Jones played offensive guard from 1966-69 and earned first team All-Ivy League for an outstanding 1968 season. 1968 was really something special – after winning the Ivy League championship two years prior, Jones and the Crimson earned an undefeated to claim another conference championship. Jones also played in the famous Harvard comeback “victory” vs. Yale in 1968 that ended in a 28-28 tie.
Who would have thought? Actor Kevin James had a long stint of wrestling before making it to the big screen for his role as Doug Heffernan on the CBS sitcom The King of Queens.
Before James pursued his career of acting in various movies including, Hitch, as well as starring as as a teacher turned MMA fighter in Here Comes the Boom, he was in fact on the same high school wrestling team as pro wrestling star Mick Foley.
In one interview, James even said he would take down Foley “all the time” in his high school wrestling team. Who knows, if he never pursued acting, he might still be in the ring with Foley himself.
Mark Harmon has been a staple character in numerous hit dramas, starring in such series as West Wing, NCIS and JAG. But before Harmon became a regular in Hollywood on the Red Carpet — and married the adorable Pam Dawber of Mork and Mindy fame — he was strutting his stuff elsewhere in Los Angeles.
After completing his associate degree at Pierce College in Los Angeles, Harmon transferred to nearby UCLA where he was the Bruins’ starting quarterback for two years. Harmon took a team coming off a dismal 2-7-1 season in 1971 and led the Bruins to an 8-3 and 9-2 record in the following years.
Those outside the U.K. may not know that Vinnie Jones has been a bad boy since long before appearing on the big screen. The Englishman’s signature tough guy character has made for classic roles like as the Juggernaut featured on classics like the Juggernaut in X-Men: The Last Stand and his legendary role as the crazy soccer firm leader in EuroTrip.
Jones had the perfect experience to play the role of a crazed British soccer hooligan in EuroTrip, as he was a hard man on one of Britain’s most notoriously tough teams, Wimbledon FC’s “Crazy Gang.”
From bad boy on the pitch to bad boy in the pictures, Jones keeps on crushing it.
Carl Weathers dazzled on one of the biggest stages in boxing history as Apollo Creed in the classic Rocky series. It should be no surprise that the man who made up half of the manliest handshake in history has his own history as an athlete.
Before putting up some big hits in his acting career, Weathers was laying down some big hits on the gridiron. Not only did he play Division I football at for the San Diego State Aztecs, Weathers played a pair of NFL seasons with the Oakland Raiders and spent a season in the Canadian Football League.
Okay, this one really doesn’t require an active imagination in any sense of the of word. Lou Ferrigno, who is quite literally built like the Hulk, took over our televisions playing just that in the 1970s on CBS’s The Incredible Hulk series.
Before he was tearing off his shirt, getting mean and turning green , he was a professional body builder. (Well, he was still tearing his shirt off then too.)
The biggest difference from bodybuilding to acting as the Hulk for Ferrigno – who famously starred in Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Pumping Iron – was swapping tanning lotion out for green paint.
Jason Segel’s various comedic roles from sitcoms like How I Met Your Mother and Freaks and Geeks to his ridiculous character in films like I Love You, Man have made him a lovable teddy that we can’t get enough of.
Actually, he was pulling on heart strings in high school too.
The 6’4” Segel was a fan favorite on Harvard-Westlake School’s (Los Angeles, CA) basketball team. Although he served as the backup center, his springs earned him the title “Dr. Dunk” after winning a dunk contest. Segel’s team won back-to-back state championships in his time there.
Oh yeah, and the player he was backing up was former NBA center Jason Collins.
Mahershala Ali had his breakthrough on the silver screen as a Juan in the film “Moonlight.” For his role, Ali won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Ali won a second Academy Award for his role in Green Book. What does all that mean? Ali is a great actor with a bright future ahead of him.
However, Ali didn’t always plan on becoming an actor, and the path he took before that looked like it was going to be a slam dunk. After high school, Ali enrolled at Division I Saint Mary’s College but became disenfranchised with the treatment of athletes. Ali then made the pass of his life and ditched basketball for acting, a move that has worked out quite well.
You think Channing Tatum learned his moves for “Magic Mike” on set? Do you think Tatum was taught how to tackle while filming “21 Jump Street”? No, he didn’t. Tatum spent his formative years in Tampa where he starred on his high school’s football team. The man who was voted most athletic in his class then went onto play college football at Glenville State College in West Virginia.
College football, Tatum would soon find out, was not what he anticipated, and the scholarship athlete dropped out to return home where he took on a few odd jobs in different fields. From there, Tatum turned to modeling gigs to get his name and talent out there. Modeling gigs snowballed into small acting roles, and soon enough Tatum was starring in Hollywood blockbusters. Touchdown Tatum!
Josh Duhamel was a stud with a cannon for an arm, and that cannon helped land him a job as the quarterback for Minot State University. Despite his best efforts, Duhamel wasn’t going to the NFL. Hardly anyone does from Minot State. So Duhamel did what everyone else would do in his position: transform himself.
Yes, Duhamel, one of the stars of the “Transformers” movie series, reinvented himself. After college, he became a model before transitioning to a different kind of job in front of the cameras. As an actor, Duhamel has starred in dozens of television and movie roles.
We can all agree that comic actor Jon Stewart is a good-looking dude who seems to – save for his gradually graying hair – defy the aging process. Still, it’s hard to imagine the longtime host of The Daily Show being active, as he spent over a decade sitting behind a desk.
Daly’s fantastic flow was likely right at home in his younger years, as the Comedy Central icon spent his undergraduate years on the pitch College of William & Mary’s soccer team. In fact, Stewart even scored a game-winning goal against the NCAA powerhouse Connecticut Huskies to win the ECAC Championship.
Sam “in the” Hunt wasn’t always the most loveable personality in country music. A standout high school quarterback, Hunt enrolled at Division I Middle Tennessee State University in 2003 and played there through the 2004 season. Upset with the limited amount of playing time he saw, Hunt transferred to the University of Alabama Birmingham where he started to make a bigger impact.
There at UAB is where Hunt also picked up a guitar for the first time, teaching himself how to play after practice. After graduating in 2007, Hunt tried out for the Kansas City Chiefs. Needless to say, he didn’t make the cut. So Hunt whipped out the trusty guitar and started throwing together some nice chords. Today, Hunt is one of the most recognizable names in country music.
Forest Whitaker has been spitting words of wisdom in countless classics on the silver screen for decades, but it was his second gig ever that gives us a glimpse into his past life. Whitaker’s role as a high school football player on Fast Times at Ridgemont High made for a seamless transition from his former reality.
Whitaker was a standout defensive tackle at Palisades Charter High School (Los Angeles, CA), enough so that he earned a scholarship from nearby California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.
Had it not been for an apparent back injury that led to a change in university, we may never have been gifted one of our favorite wise man of the movies.
Like many of us did growing up, Kurt Russell took after his father, Bing, in creating a similar career path. Except Russell followed his pops down two particularly unique professions that we could only dream. Russell’s acting career has blossomed from a heartthrob hero to a transcendent action star. He also played professional baseball just like pops.
Russell already had plenty of acting roles under his belt by the time he decided to give professional baseball a try. His Minor League run, which began in 1971, was no gimmick, however, as he lasted a few years playing at the Class A and Double-A level as a switch hitter.
Although most people know him for being the main character in the Terminator franchise or his time spent as the governor of California, Schwarzenegger actually started out as a bodybuilder. That famous physique made him perfect for the role of Conan the Barbarian, his breakout role, when he transitioned to acting later in life.
Schwarzenegger has also been in other action films like Predator, Total Recall, as well as comedy films like Kindergarten Cop and Red Heat. As of late, he’s been exploring his inner comedian with those films (although his most recent movie returned him to the Terminator franchise).
Michael Jordan is one of the most well-known athletes, having risen to stardom playing basketball. He has won numerous accolades for his playing and transitioned to acting through his role in Space Jam where he played himself, alongside Bugs Bunny and other Loony Toons.
Though he no longer plays on the court, having retired in 2003, Jordan is also an accomplished businessman. Aside from Space Jam, Jordan has also been in a documentary about playing with the Chicago Bulls as well as Netflix miniseris, The Last Dance.
Charles Aaron “Bubba” Smith played in the NFL for nine years before becoming an actor. During that time, he played for teams like the Baltimore Colts and the Oakland Raiders. In 1988, he was inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame. Shortly after he retired from playing football, he got his start in acting by appearing in Miller Lite commercials.
Afterwards, he was cast as Moses Hightower in the Police Academy movies. Smith died at age 66 from neurological disorders resulting from numerous concussions sustained during his youth in football.
Gina Carano began her career as a mixed martial artist, and won titles at the World Pro Fighting Show and Strikeforce. After some stunning wins, and some challenges in making weight for her fights, Carano has not fought since 2009, despite still being under contract with UFC.
She recently acted in Deadpool and the hit Disney series The Mandalorian as Cara Dune. However, her career in film has been cut short after she made some cruel and highly prejudiced comments on social media. Lucasfilm dropped her.
Beginning in 1969, Fred Dryer played in the NFL for the Los Angeles Rams and the New York Giants as a defensive end. He continued to play for 13 years before eventually retiring from football and turning his eyes to the silver screen. When directors looked for exceptionally tall and well-built actors, Dryer’s 6’6 frame made him an ideal choice.
After making an appearance in a few episodes of Cheers, Dryer eventually took the starring role in Hunter and the movie Death Before Dishonor. Lately, he’s taken another role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe when he portrays a HYDRA operative in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Ronda Rousey started her career as a mixed martial arts fighter and professional wrestler by being the first American woman to take home a medal at the Olympics in judo as of 2008. She became the first UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion. Then in 2018, she became the first woman to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame.
In addition to fighting, she has acted in movies including The Expendables 3, The Fast and the Furious 7, and Mile 22. She has also provided her voice and done motion capture for multiple video games.
Alex Karras might not be a household name anymore, but he played with the Detroit Lions in the NFL for 12 years and was a four-time Pro Bowl player. After retiring from his career in football, Karras switched to sports announcing and even played parts in famous movies like Blazing Saddles.
It wasn’t just comedic movies either: He had a starring role in Victor/Victoria where he displayed his musical and acting chops alongside Dame Julie Andrews and played George Papadopolis in the well-known sitcom Webster in the 1980s.
Before coming out as transgender, Caitlyn Jenner made a name for herself by winning an Olympic gold medal in the decathlon in Montreal in 1976. Jenner also played football in college before sustaining a severe knee injury.
Beginning in 2007, Jenner appeared on the popular TV show Keeping Up With the Kardashians along with her wife Kris and their children. Since announcing her transition in 2015, Jenner has appeared as a transgender activist on many programs and shows, as well as her own show I Am Cait, which documented her transition.
Long before he took his hilarious role in Airplane!, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had been running back and forth across the court, making a name for himself in basketball. Jabbar played 20 seasons in the NBA for the Los Angeles Lakers and the Milwaukee Bucks. He won numerous awards – like Most Valuable Player – an astounding six times.
In fact, he has also been active in U.S. politics and charity organizations. He was named a U.S. global ambassador by the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Then, in 2016, President Barrack Obama awarded Jabbar the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Talk about a busy career!
Lee Jun-Fan, better known as Bruce Lee, grew up in Hong Kong learning multiple types of martial arts. He was a Chinese martial artist, winning boxing tournaments at school, long before he returned to America and started appearing on the big screen in hits like Enter the Dragon and The Game of Death.
Though he died very young, he managed to found his own school of martial arts, called Jeet Kune Do. He is also widely credited with changing widespread view of Chinese Americans in film and inspired directors to become more inclusive.
This famous Englishman is usually cast as the bad guy or anti-hero. Even when he plays “the good guy” of the movie, he has a thrilling back story. Such is the case in his most famous films, such as The Transporter trilogy or the Fast and Furious sequels. So where did the action star pick up his movie moves?
Statham picked up his physical prowess the old-fashioned way: through sports. Long before he became a leading man, he practiced kung fu, karate, and kickboxing. An avid footballer, he even held a place on Britain’s national diving team! It’s no wonder Statham became an action star.
Having to choose between a professional sports career versus an acting career might be a dream for most, but for Jim Brown it was a reality. When production delays made him miss the beginning of training camp, the owner of the Cleveland Browns threatened to fine him $1,500 for every week missed. Brown promptly retired, instead.
As a fullback for the Browns, he is considered to be one of the greatest running backs of all time. Brown earned numerous Pro Bowl invitations and was named NFL MVP three times. He followed that up with a 40-year film career. Jim Brown proves that you can have two successful careers in one lifetime.
It’s nearly impossible to picture the comedian taking anything seriously, but that’s just what he did as a high school athlete. Foxx’s acting awards are almost too many to list, but include an Oscar, SAG, and Golden Globe for his portrayal of Ray Charles in 2004’s Ray.
But Foxx’s first ambition was never in the acting field – it was to play for the Dallas Cowboys. Did he have a shot? As his high school’s quarterback, he became the first player in the school’s history to pass for over 1,000 yards. In the end, though, the acting limelight won over.
Superhero and super athlete? Yes, Dean Cain managed to be both. The actor, whose career spans over 25 years, is perhaps best known for playing Clark Kent/Superman in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. But if it hadn’t been for an untimely injury, his starring role might have stayed on the football field.
Before beginning his acting career, Cain played football at Princeton. As a free safety, he set a season record with 12 interceptions in just 10 games. He was drafted by NFL’s Buffalo Bills, but a knee injury during training camp ended his football career – and put him on the path to Krypton.
What do you do after playing for not one, not two, but three iconic sports teams? Well, if you’re Rick Fox, you pivot into a successful acting career. Fox’s noteworthy sports career began in college, where he played for the North Carolina Tar Heels. After graduating, he played for the Boston Celtics and then the LA Lakers.
After retiring from the NBA, Fox headed over to Hollywood. He’s picked up guest spots in popular shows such as One Tree Hill, Melrose Place, and Shameless. Fox has also done a fair share of time on reality shows, including Dancing with the Stars and the cooking competition Chopped.
Terry Bradshaw is one of those stars who can do it all: sports, acting, and even singing are part of his repertoire. His first career, football, was arguably his most successful. It definitely won the most awards! As a quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Bradshaw led the team to 4 Super Bowl wins in 6 seasons, landing him in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
After football, Bradshaw turned to singing, eventually releasing six albums of country-Western music. One of his covers even reached the Top 20 on Billboard’s country chart. As an actor, Bradshaw’s diverse portfolio includes a little bit of everything: cameos, guest starring roles, reality television, and movie appearances.
Keanu Reeves has played in some of the most iconic movies of his time: the John Wick series, Point Break,The Matrix trilogy, and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure. But it’s one of his first roles that reveals the athlete behind the beloved actor.
In one of his first major roles, Reeves played a hockey player in Youngblood. But it wasn’t just acting on his part. Prior to heading to Hollywood, Reeves had been a hugely successful goalie for the De La Salle College hockey team. Reeves was even recruited by Canada’s professional hockey league, the OHL. He chose acting over hockey, and the rest is history!
This article was originally published: Famous Actors Who Also Starred as Athletes
Marilyn Monroe’s Bombshell Beauty Secrets Finally Revealed
From just a plain housewife to one of Hollywood’s most famous icons ever, Marilyn Monroe was truly an extraordinary person. Yet behind the glamour of her showbiz career was a woman who battled many insecurities. She often resorted to fascinating beauty rituals and secrets to carve out her legendary image. Read on to get an inside look into the unbelievable beauty tricks the star used to become one of the most famous women on the planet.
title: 16-08-2020 15-28-49
You Can Actually Visit These Film And TV Bars And Restaurants In Real Life
Have you ever wished that you could join Monica, Rachel, Chandler, and Joey on the couch at Central Perk? Or grab a beer with Barney at McLaren’s? While many were filmed on a Hollywood sound stage, some of our favorite on-screen meals took place in real settings — and we can’t wait to visit. Check out these undeniably iconic movie and TV bars and restaurants that exist in real life.