Editor’s Note: This article was part of our April Fools 2010 project, in which our site was transported back to April 1, 1980. To see all of the retro articles written for this event, please visit our April Fools 2010 Homepage.
Unknown to most and with a name unpronounceable to all, bodybuilder turned actor Arnold Schwarzenegger has made his dramatic debut on the CBS TV-Movie The Jayne Mansfield Story. Schwarzenegger was cast in the role of former Mr. Universe Mickey Hargitay, who was married to Mansfield from 1958 to 1964 and had three children with her. Mansfield, who was well known for her dyed-blonde hair and cleavage-revealing outfits, died tragically in a car accident in 1967.
This reviewer had an opportunity to see this film before its scheduled broadcast this fall, and I can say with certainty that all who witness it will be impressed with the Austrian performer’s dramatic debut. Playing a character with origins close to his own (Mickey was a Hungarian born bodybuilder), Schwarzenegger is a 5-time Mr. Olympia Champion and will again take the bodybuilding stage later this year after a 5 year absence.
His charismatic ways were previously on display in a documentary that focused on the 1975 Mr. Olympia entitled Pumping Iron.
In his first major role, the Austrian shows there is more to him than just mounds of muscle, turning in a performance that will have dramatic directors taking note. With a mix of physicality and a profound understanding of character, it would seem the sky is the limit for the young Schwarzenegger. Though if Arnold wishes to continue pursuing a career in the arts, he’ll be taken much more seriously if he adopts a name that’s easier to pronounce.
Either way, we look forward to seeing what emotional highs and lows this gifted actor will bring to the screen in the coming years.
The Jayne Mansfield Story is set to air this fall on CBS networks.