Athletes who tried their luck (and were successful) in the movies

It is increasingly common to see sports stars on the big screen to star in movies and attract a larger audience .

Ronda Rousey, Mike Tyson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

We tell you which sports stars have entered the big screen. Photos: Flickr-Miguel Discart, Flickr-evarinaldiphotography, Flickr-yodelanecdotal

LatinAmerican Post | Theoscar Mogollón González

Listen to this article

Leer en español: Deportistas que probaron suerte en el cine

Although many may not believe it, sport and cinema have gone hand by hand for a long time. The number of films based on any of these activities is large , to the point that it is difficult to say which is the one that has been represented the most.

Now, that a movie based on sports is filmed is not always going to mean that some athlete stars in it. But some, have. Most of those stars who have ventured into the big screen have done so with action or comedy productions , thus demonstrating that they choose to get out of their comfort zone.

The list of athletes is extensive, so much so that today many of them are considered more actors than ex-athletes, such as Terry Crews, Dwayne Johnson, Arnold Schwarzenegger or Jason Statham . However, the following figures that we will present to you have had a much longer trajectory in their respective sport, something that gave them the great opportunity to try their luck in the cinema. How many of them did you come to recognize?

Round rousey

The most feared woman in the world. Ronda stood out from a young age as a judoka, managing to hang an Olympic medal and to become the first American woman to win one in the discipline. Later, she excelled in mixed martial arts and was even a UFC and WWE champion. That rude girl demeanor led her to the movies, where she shared the screen with great artists. Her filmography includes several action films such as The Expendables 3, Fast and Furious 7 and Mile 22 .

Shaquille o'neill

One of the many NBA figures who made an extra leap to the movies. His record has rings in the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat , as well as Olympic gold at the Olympics. from 96 . During his last years in basketball, and subsequent retirement, the giant managed to participate in multiple films, mainly comedy, such as Kazaam, Scary Movie 4 and Son Como Niños 2 .

Johnny Weissmuller

It is probably the athlete who was most linked to the cinema. The Romanian-born one stood out in swimming, winning up to six Olympic medals between the 1924 and 1928 games, making very good times and without losing a race since 1921 (according to the chronicles). Later, he briefly dabbled in modeling and then made his way to the big screen, where he played the iconic Tarzan . In the end, he made about 12 movies, becoming one of the most sought-after actors in Hollywood's golden age of cinema .

Bob Anderson

The life of this fencer is worthy for a movie. After the end of World War II, where he had to provide support and teach some techniques to his British compatriots, he devoted himself to fencing at a higher level. In fact, he represented his nation at the 1952 Olympics . Soon after, he was given the opportunity to demonstrate his foil prowess when he was commissioned to perform Darth Vader's fight scenes in Star Wars . He also collaborated in the fourth and fifth installments of said saga, as well as in James Bond and The Lord of the Rings films.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Another of the glories of the best basketball in the world. From 1969 to 1989 he won up to six rings and various singles titles while with the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers. Its premiere on the big screen came from the hand of Bruce Lee in the film Game of Death . Since then, he has made his appearance in a large number of film and television productions, such as The Big Bang Theory .

Also read: Opinion: these are some ideas to make the "All-Star Game" even more interesting

Mike Tyson

The youngest boxer in history to win a world heavyweight title became a legend in the sport. In total, he won the title twice and left a 50-6 record . His foray into the film world began with a series of documentaries, but the most recognized films were the first two installments of The Hungover, Ip Man 3 and Rocky VI .

Gina Carano

Called the "Face of the Women of MMA." This former martial arts fighter was ranked the third best in the world at 145 pounds at the time , according to the Unified District MMA Women's Ranking. Her filmography is quite extensive, where she has shown that great character in action films. Among those recognized are Haywire, Fast and Furious 6, Deadpool , and her most recent performance was in The Mandalorian .

Honorable mentions

  • Esther Williams : She was a successful swimmer from a young age and became a Hollywood star in the 1940s and 1950s.

  • Vinnie Jones : Former Chelsea FC soccer player. He has participated in a large number of action films.
  • Michael Jordan - The NBA icon came to play a basketball game with the Looney Tunes at Space Jam .
  • Carl Weathers - Former football player remembered by many for playing Apollo Creed in the Rocky movies.
  • Bubba Smith : He was an outstanding Fotball player who won a Super Bowl. Many know him for his role as Officer Hightower in the Police Academy saga.