5 Surprising movie stars who were wrestlers before they were famous

Wrestling, a renowned grappling combat sport, holds a special place in the world of athletics. Particularly popular in the United States, wrestling thrives at both high school and college levels. As a cornerstone of numerous school athletic programs nationwide, this sport boasts a substantial community of competitors and practitioners.

Intriguingly, the corridors of Hollywood hold tales of unexpected wrestling backgrounds among some of its brightest stars. Here are five movie icons whose wrestling pasts might surprise you.

Tom Cruise Renowned for his thrilling action movies and daredevil stunts, 61-year-old Tom Cruise is celebrated for his acting prowess. While Cruise is well-known for his aviation license and breathtaking cliff jumps, few are aware of his wrestling days. His former schoolmate, Tom Jarrett, divulged that Cruise actively wrestled during his stint at Glen Ridge High School.

Robin Williams The late Robin Williams remains immortalized as both a versatile actor and a comedic genius. From Dead Poets Society to Jumanji, his talent knew no bounds. What many might not know is that Williams was part of his school’s wrestling team at Detroit Country Day. His enigmatic energy extended to challenging prominent TV host Jay Leno.

Chris Pratt Emerging as a colossal Hollywood figure through roles in Jurassic World and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, 44-year-old Chris Pratt boasts immense fame. However, Pratt’s journey to stardom took an unconventional path. For nearly 12 years, he was dedicated to amateur wrestling before venturing into the world of film and television.

Mark Ruffalo A seasoned actor who has graced screens since 1998, Mark Ruffalo gained international acclaim for his portrayal of the Hulk. Before captivating audiences with his dynamic performances, Ruffalo found himself competing in wrestling during his junior high and high school days. His wrestling journey spanned locations from Wisconsin to Virginia.

Ludacris Widely recognized as a gifted rapper, Ludacris launched his music career in 1998, captivating audiences with his signature rap style and charismatic persona. Equally successful as an actor, his role as Tej in the Fast & Furious franchise is iconic. Beyond the stage and screen, Ludacris honed his wrestling skills during his school years, despite the challenge of finding opponents his size due to his weight of only 90 pounds.

These tales of Hollywood’s past wrestling connections shed light on the diverse journeys that ultimately led these movie stars to the limelight.

The unexpected convergence of entertainment and athleticism offers a glimpse into the multifaceted lives that these renowned individuals have lived.