Of all the actors who have had an impact on the industry, the one with the most fascinating life might just be Arnold Schwarzenegger. Sure, Ronald Reagan eventually went on to become president of the United States, but it's probably safe to say Arnold would have done the same were he able to do so. Regardless, the man has had a significant impact on moviemaking over the past 40+ years, and he's also impacted politics, having served twice as the governor of California.
Because he's been in the public eye for most of his life, there are tons of interesting details about Schwarzenegger, so if you count yourself a fan, you probably know a lot about him. Still, there are plenty of things you probably didn't know about Arnold Schwarzenegger, and this article aims to correct that! Featured here are some of the most fascinating facts about the man, so take a look, and be sure to upvote any you didn't already know.
His Father Beat Him As A Child, Believing He Was Gay
Everyone who knows Arnold Schwarzenegger knows he has a history with the ladies, but his parents thought he was gay when he was a young man. This wasn't something that was as accepted back then as it is now, and they beat him for it. The reason they believed that had to do with the posters he put all over his room. Wanting to become a bodybuilder himself, he put up posters of other men who competed in the sport.
Seeing this, his parents assumed he was attracted to the men since other boys his age put up posters of women, so they beat him. The actor who once portrayed a dangerous cyborg spoke about the issue in an interview with 60 Minutes when he mentioned that his father "ran after me with a belt and beat me," which he expanded on with his thoughts on his mother's approach:
I don't know if mum thought I was gay or if she just thought there was something off. And let's catch it early. She asked the doctor, "Can you help me? I don't know if there's something wrong with my son because his wall is full of naked men. All of Arnold's friends have pictures of girls above their bed. And Arnold has no girls."608Interesting fact?
He Was On The Shortlist For 'The Incredible Hulk'
In the 1970s, a little show hit the airwaves called The Incredible Hulk, and it boosted Lou Ferrigno to superstardom. While Ferrigno may have won the part in the end, he had some tough competition. Schwarzenegger was up for the role when he was just trying to get his career as an actor going. He ended up losing the role to Ferrigno, largely because of his height.
Schwarzenegger isn't a short man by any means, as he stands a good 6 feet 2 inches, but that wasn't tall enough for the producers of the show. Ferrigno stands three inches taller than Schwarzenegger, so he definitely had an advantage in playing a character known for his size. Ferrigno's ability to act without saying anything didn't hurt, either, and he went on to fortune and glory while covered in green paint. Fortunately, Schwarzenegger's career didn't suffer much from this missed opportunity.412Interesting fact?
He Supported His Brother's Son After His Brother Perished In An AccidentPhoto: The Celebrity Apprentice/NBC
On May 20, 1971, Arnold's brother, Meinhard, perished in a car accident, leaving behind his wife and 3-year-old son, Patrick. When this happened, Arnold decided to take care of his nephew from that point forward. That's not to say he raised him, but he was there for him financially since his father couldn't be. Schwarzenegger paid for his education and later helped him immigrate to the United States to attend the University of Southern California's School of Law.
Patrick M. Knapp Schwarzenegger graduated with a doctor of jurisprudence (J.D.) in 1995, and he went on to work for Sony Music's legal department. He also worked at the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office during the final year of his education. In 2017, he worked for his uncle as an advisor to the governor. He continued in this capacity after Arnold left office and took over leading The Celebrity Apprentice on NBC.414Interesting fact?
He Went AWOL To Attend A Bodybuilding CompetitionPhoto: Predator / 20th Century Fox
Schwarzenegger knew from a young age that he wanted to be a bodybuilder. His dream started at the tender age of 14, which was less than a year after picking up his first barbell. He devoted most of his time to achieving this goal and even broke into the local gym on the weekend to train. Like other young men in Austria, he was compelled into national service, but he never stopped thinking about bodybuilding, which ultimately led to his being absent without leave (AWOL).
This came during basic training, which he left to attend a bodybuilding competition. He ended up spending a week in the stockades for the stunt, but the man was unapologetic. Serving in the Austrian army wasn't his dream - bodybuilding was, and he wouldn't let anything stand in his way. This act of disobedience may have landed him in prison for a week, but it also furthered his career goals. In his last year of military service (1966), he competed in the NABBA Mr. Universe competition, taking home the second-place trophy.4410Interesting fact?