Russell Crowe’s character asked in that famous Gladiator scene, “Are you not entertained?”, and when it comes to sport, it’s a valid question. Let’s face it, if you’ve ever watched a sports match or event – regardless of the sport – you’ll know that it’s an action-packed experience that leaves spectators on the edge of their seats.
Naturally, on-field performances have given sports stars across the globe the confidence needed to take on an entirely different career path – acting. And when you think about it, putting on a show for sports fans, facing scrutiny for poor performances and making headlines is not all that different to the world of showbiz.
Congolese-American former basketball centre Dikembe Mutombo boasts a successful NBA career. He has played for some pretty big names, which include the Denver Nuggets, Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks and Houston Rockets. He retired in 2009 after 18 seasons, leaving many wondering what he would do next.
Having previously had cameos in movies such as Juwanna Mann and Like Mike, the leap into entertainment wasn’t all too shocking. He has since gone on to appear in several commercials in the USA and has also made an appearance in Coming 2 America and Uncle Drew. You can catch Uncle Drew on Studio Universal, DStv Channel 112 on Sunday, 18 July at 11:55 .
Current centre for the Los Angeles Clippers and Congolese-Spanish national Serge Ibaka has certainly made waves in the sports world. But, did you know that this basketball star is also a musician and hosts a YouTube cooking series? He recently joined forces with French rapper Ninho on the well-received song Champion, and cooks up a storm for his teammates on his YouTube channel show, How Hungry Are You? Check out the channel, then keep up with the latest NBA fixtures on ESPN 2, DStv Channel 219 every Thursday at 18:00 .
Ghanaian footballer and striker for Legon Cities FC Asamoah Gyan is a man of many talents. In addition to playing football, he has dabbled in boxing promotion, plays tennis and has an Air Carrier Licence (ACL) from the Ghanaian Civil Aviation Authority. He is also an avid businessman and owns several successful businesses in Ghana. One of those businesses is an entertainment hub called Infiniti.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of former professional boxer Mike Tyson. He had an incredibly successful career, faced criminal charges and has since moved on to more diverse endeavours. Shortly after his release from prison in 2009, he had a cameo in The Hangover movie. He has also started his own boxing promotions company, released two books, starred in documentaries and has since hinted at a possible return to the sport.
Everyone knows ‘The Rock’ and how he has taken over the world of entertainment. However, he first started his career as a footballer and wrestler – he even wrestled for WWE (formerly WWF). He retired from wrestling in 2004 to pursue a career in acting and has built up quite the resume. In keeping with the theme of drastic career changes, he has announced that he will be running for President of the United States in 2023! Or so he says in the new series Young Rock. As a build-up to this, he sits down to discuss his life and share his stories. You can follow the “interview” by watching Young Rock coming to Showmax on the 26th July.