My Top 5 Athletes-turned-Movie Stars

Shamarie By Shamarie, 19th Jul 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Celebrities>Hollywood

This is my list of the five best athletes turned movie stars of all time.

Arnold Schwarzenger

Arnold Schwarzenger is arguably the greatest athlete turned movie star. He is an icon and one of the most bankable actors ever. The former seven-time Mr. Olympia and Mr. Universe starred in many blockbuster movies. Arnold Schwarzenger’s breakthrough film was the sword-and-sorcery epic Conan the Barbarian in 1982, which was a box-office hit and resulted in a sequel. In 1984, he appeared in James Cameron's science-fiction thriller film The Terminator that was a massive critical and box-office success. It was perhaps Schwarzenegger’s greatest movie role. He subsequently reprised the Terminator character in the franchise's later installments in 1991, 2003, and 2015. Other notable successful films were Commando (1985), The Running Man (1987), Predator (1987), Twins (1988) and True Lies (1994). Recognized as the greatest action film star ever, Arnold Schwarzenger has earned hundreds of millions of dollars in his Hollywood career.

Image credit

Dwayne Johnson

Dwayne Johnson is the biggest action star of the social media generation. He first gained mainstream fame in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF/E) from 1996 to 2004 as The Rock, winning multiple championships and becoming one of the most significant stars of the company. Dwayne Johnson’s first leading film role was in The Scorpion King in 2002. For this role, he was paid US $5.5 million, a world record for an actor in his first starring role. He has since appeared in several films, including The Rundown, The Game Plan, and Get Smart. Most moviegoers know him for his portrayals of Luke Hobbs in The Fast and the Furious franchise. Dwayne Johnson’s dynamic personality and supreme charisma are a winning formula for box office success. He has the potential to surpass iconic action star Arnold Schwarzenger.

Image credit

Jim Brown

Jim Brown was one of the first athletes to make a successful transition to acting. The greatest football player ever was the first black action star thanks to his roles in The Dirty Dozen and Ice Station Zebra. In 1969, Brown starred in 100 Rifles with Burt Reynolds and Raquel Welch. The film was one of the first to feature an interracial love scene. Jim Brown was a huge star in the Blaxploitation era, which he acted with Fred Williamson in films such as 1974's Three the Hard Way and 1975's Take a Hard Ride. He later appeared in Any Given Sunday, Mars Attacks!, and He Got Game.

Image credit

Carl Weathers

Carl Weathers had a brief professional football career with the Oakland Raiders before he started making film. He got his first break in the blaxploitation films Bucktown and Friday Foster. Carl Weathers is best known for portraying Apollo Creed in the Rocky franchise that established him as a major player in Hollywood. Other notable roles were Jericho "Action" Jackson in Action Jackson, Dillon in Predator, and a semi-fictionalized version of himself on the comedy series Arrested Development.

Image credit

Bruce Lee

Bruce Lee was the greatest martial artists of all time. A pop culture icon, Bruce Lee’s influence in the martial arts film genre is unmatched. He brought awareness to Chinese martial arts in the West in the 1970s. Bruce Lee’s distinguished roles were in the films: Fist of Fury (1972), Way of the Dragon (1972), Enter the Dragon (1973) and The Game of Death (1978). He tragically died at the age of 32.

Image credit



Arnold Schwarzenger, Bruce Lee, Carl Weathers, Dwayne Johnson, Jim Brown

Meet the author

author avatar Shamarie
I am a passionate writer from Harlem, New York. My expertise is creative writing and poetry. I enjoy expressing myself freely on paper and sharing my ideas with the world.

Share this page

moderator Mark Gordon Brown moderated this page.
If you have any complaints about this content, please let us know


author avatar brendamarie
19th Jul 2015 (#)

Great article! Dwayne Johnson is a wonderful guy. I met him years back. He was famous than.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Steve Kinsman
19th Jul 2015 (#)

And didn't Chuck Connors play for the Dodgers for a while? Great post Shamarie.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Deepizzaguy
19th Jul 2015 (#)

Carl Weathers was great in his role as Apollo Creed in the Rocky Balboa franchises. Dwayne Johnson was great in his role in San Andreas.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Carol Roach
20th Jul 2015 (#)

Didn't Jim Brown also do Shaft?

Reply to this comment

author avatar Katharyn Brady
21st Jul 2015 (#)

Love your top 5. I knew about all of them except Bruce Lee. Dwayne Johnson is my favorite out of all of them.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Kristy_Ambrose
21st Jul 2015 (#)

Great list! My fav is Bruce Lee for sure! I also would have added Wilt Chamberlain to the list (Airplane and Conan the Destroyer).

Reply to this comment

author avatar Kingwell
22nd Jul 2015 (#)

Good Share. Blessings.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Nancy Czerwinski
23rd Jul 2015 (#)

Shamarie, excellent article as always! I love the Rock he's my favorite!

Reply to this comment

Add a comment
Can't login?