It takes a special kind of actor to become a member of the action all-stars. These entertainers have played iconic roles in some of the best action movies in Hollywood history. With resumes full of thrilling chase scenes, fight choreography and gun battles, their all-star film performances are flat-out unforgettable.
Arnold Schwarzenegger As an action all-star, Schwarzenegger has put together a string of innovative and successful films no other actor can rival. Setting the standard with 1982’s “Conan the Barbarian,” then moving on to his iconic role in “The Terminator” two years later, Arnold developed his larger-than-life persona in numerous action-packed movies.
Sylvester Stallone This performer forever etched his name in the annals of action all-stars with his work on the “Rambo” franchise. Already a star from 1976’s “Rocky,” Stallone made an action classic with “First Blood” in 1982. Through consequent years, Stallone stayed relevant to the genre, adding films like 1986’s “Cobra” and “Cliffhanger” in 1993.
Bruce Lee With his blazing speed and physical prowess, this all-star made his mark on the action movies of the early 1970s. With 1971’s “Fists of Fury,” Lee introduced the world to his breaknec fighting style. He followed with martial arts classics like 1972’s “The Way of the Dragon” and “Enter the Dragon” in 1973.
Chuck Norris No other member of the action all-stars has captured the public’s imagination quite like Norris. Whether he’s roundhouse kicking in TV’s “Walker, Texas Ranger” or machine gunning in 1984’s “The Delta Force,” Chuck Norris is just plai unstoppable.
Clint Eastwood This action all-star’s unimpressed demeanor set the standard for all who would follow. Eastwood developed his skills with western-themed films like 1964’s “A Fistful of Dollars,” then moved on to the iconic “Dirty Harry” franchise during the next decade. He’s most often been behind the camera during recent years, but even from the director’s chair, Eastwood is still an action hero.
Jean-Claude Van Damme In the early 1990s, no one was a bigger action star than Van Damme. He burst onto the scene with “Bloodsport” in 1988, turning that success into a string of action-packed films. Van Damme’s noteworthy action movies include 1992’s “Universal Soldier” and 1994’s “Timecop.”
Carl Weathers The most underrated of action all-stars, Weathers has played supporting roles in some of Hollywood’s greatest franchises. He first made waves in 1976’s “Rocky” as boxing champ Apollo Creed. Roles in films like 1987’s “Predator” and 1988’s “Action Jackson” sealed Weathers’ fate as an action icon.
Steven Seagal Proving that you don’t need complicated dialogue to be successful, this action all-star communicates with his fists instead of his words. Seagal’s heyday came in the early 1990s, when he starred in action classics like “Under Siege” and “On Deadly Ground.” His relatively small yet still awesome role in 1996’s “Executive Decision” also deserves mention.
Harrison Ford In the shadow of Ford’s work in the “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones” franchises, his other action movies can get lost. Relatively lesser-known films like 1982’s “Blade Runner” and 1993’s “The Fugitive” are all just as action-packed as his most famous works.
Bruce Willis In 1988, this action all-star made movie magic with the first installment of the “Die Hard” franchise. Since then, he’s played roles in some of the genre’s most intriguing fare. Movies like 1997’s “The Fifth Element” and 1998’s “Armageddon” cemented Willis’ status as an action legend.
– Andrew Jett