Our Favorite Sports Movie Actors: Where Are They Now?
One of the striking differences between the average sports movie and the rest of its cinematic brethren is that—good or bad—it often features a cast of lesser known actors and athletes.
Of course, classics like The Natural, Slap Shot and Bull Durham gave top billing to some of the biggest stars in the industry, but for every sports flick starring Robert Redford, there are a dozen that either landed a future A-lister early in his career or featured a lesser known actor in a prominent role.
It's the nature of the genre and one of the reasons so many beloved classics proudly wear the label of "cult classic."
As a result, plenty of actors who played some of the most memorable characters from our favorite sports flicks haven't exactly been a prominent part of pop culture in the years since. But that doesn't mean that their lives and careers stopped after the credits rolled.
In August 2013, Bleacher Report published "Sports Movie Stars All Grown Up." This piece is a follow-up to that. Here are some more of our favorite sports movie stars and where they are now.
Guy Germaine, The Mighty Ducks
Guy Germaine may be the least fleshed-out character to appear in all three The Mighty Ducks films. His main function seems to be giving Connie Moreau someone to sit next to at team functions.
Garette Ratliff Henson
Actor Garette Ratliff Henson has had only marginal success on screen outside The Mighty Ducks franchise—bit parts in prime-time dramas, mostly.
Recently he has shifted gears, focusing on work behind the camera. His short drama Shades of Yellow premiered at the 2013 Art of Brooklyn Film Festival.
Fulton Reed, The Mighty Ducks
Fulton Reed is the very first ringer introduced in The Mighty Ducks series. He was brought on to add some muscle in the first movie, although he didn’t even know how to skate at first.
In the years after the final The Mighty Ducks movie was released, actor Elden Henson landed parts in She’s All That, Idle Hands, Cast Away and Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd.
He also nabbed guest-starring roles in several high-profile television shows before being cast in the big-budget flop Jobs and the bigger-budget juggernaut known as The Hunger Games.
Jimmy Chitwood, Hoosiers
Jimmy Chitwood was the star athlete in the beloved classic Hoosiers.
Jimmy Chitwood was played by actor Maris Valainis, who last acted in Casualties of War in 1989. He worked in golf-course management before landing his current job, according to a profile in the Los Angeles Times.
Today he lives in Costa Mesa, Calif., with his wife and two daughters. In 2012 he was interviewed by the director of a short film about Hoosiers.
Brittany Kaiser, BASEketball
Brittany Kaiser was a high school classmate of Coop and Remer in BASEketball—she hosted the party where baseketball was invented.
Cory Oliver didn’t actually find much acting work in the years after BASEketball, but in 2013 she starred in the TV series Beverly Hills Pawn.
She was a shop assistant in the reality show—I have no clue if she works that job when the cameras aren’t running.
Very masculine Stephanie is the temporary love interest of a very drunk Squeak in BASEketball.
Micah McCain is an actor and casting director who has worked steadily since appearing in BASEketball in 1998.
You might not know his name, but perhaps you know his voice from the hilarious FunnyorDie video “Bonjour, Girl!”
Vicki Vallencourt, The Waterboy
Vicki Vallencourt is the sassy love interest of the somewhat slow Bobby Boucher in The Waterboy.
Actress Fairuza Balk has worked steadily since the early '80s—her first major role was as Dorothy in Return to Oz. Other noteworthy projects include American History X, Almost Famous, Family Guy and Humboldt County.
She also voiced Mercedes Cortez in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City back in 2002. Currently she has a project in post-production and another in pre-production.
Pedro Cerrano, Major League
Pedro Cerrano is the Voodoo-practicing slugger in Major League.
Actor Dennis Haysbert has been working in TV and film dating back to 1978. Some of his more recent work includes: 24, Kung Fu Panda 2, Trophy Wife and Wreck-It-Ralph.
Although he has no trouble finding roles onscreen, he is constantly in demand for voiceover work in movies and video games. He and his deep voice have been starring in Allstate commercials since 2003.
Rachel Phelps, Major League
Rachel Phelps is the scheming owner of the Indians in Major League.
As an actress, Margaret Whitton last worked in 1994, she appearing in Trial by Jury, Menendez: A Killing in Beverly Hills and Major League II.
She directed A Bird of the Air, which was released in 2011. She has also found work producing in recent years.
Jan, Bring It On
Jan, Jan the cheerleading man. In Bring it On, he was the definitely straight male cheerleader, as opposed to the “controversial” Les.
Actor Nathan West has only worked sporadically since 2000. He had guest-starring roles in Grey’s Anatomy and That 80s Show, as well as small roles in films like Miracle and Not Another Teen Movie.
He has been married to actress Chyler Leigh since July 2002. Although West’s roles have been drying up, Leigh has been working more regularly.
Whitney, Bring It On
BFF of Courtney, Bring it On’s Whitney exists mostly to menace Toros cheerleading captain Torrance Shipman.
Nicole Bilderback worked steadily after Bring it On was released in 2000. Since then, she’s had guest-starring roles on The Practice, Boston Legal, Cold Case and The Mentalist.
That being said, roles have been few and far between since 2010. Her most notable job was probably her recurring role on Dawson’s Creek.
Sparky Polastri, Bring It On
Hired to choreograph a routine for regionals to replace the one Big Red snaked from the Clovers, the hilariously sadistic Sparky Polastri is one of Bring it On’s many scene-stealers.
As an actor/writer/producer, Ian Roberts may be the most successful of Bring it On’s original cast. His acting credits include: Key and Peele, Childrens Hospital, Arrested Development, Community, The Dictator, Parks and Recreation and Workaholics—and that’s just since 2010.
He has also won acclaim as a writer for Key and Peele, Mythbusters and the Upright Citizens Brigade. He’s worked as an actor, director, producer, writer and has appeared as himself on various programs, most recently on the Comedy Central show @midnight.
Courtney, Bring It On
One of the protagonist’s chief rivals, Bring it On’s Courtney attracted the ire of Torrance Shipman and the lustful gaze of Jan.
A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Kramer has found regular work in film and television since appearing in Bring it On. Currently she has three projects in production.
Since 2012, she has also been working as television producer. She has more than 75 episodes of three different shows under her belt already.
Apollo Creed, Rocky
The Apollo Creed character appeared in Rocky, Rocky II, Rocky III and Rocky IV. Sadly, he was beaten to death by Ivan Drago in the fourth film of the series.
Actor Carl Weathers has worked steadily in television and film since the early '70s. Prior to the Rocky franchise, he had guest roles on Good Times, The Six Million Dollar Man and Kung Fu.
More recently he starred in Brothers and Arrested Development, both TV series. He will also appear in Think Like a Man Too, which will premiere later this year.
Adrian is the longtime love of Rocky Balboa in the Rocky franchise.
Actress Talia Shire will appear in Pizza with Bullets, an absurd-sounding movie that will be released later this year.
It’s her biggest project in recent years. She worked steadily through the '70s, '80s and '90s but only sporadically since 2003.
Drago, Rocky IV
The hilariously villainous Ivan Drago appeared in Rocky IV and literally beat Apollo Creed to death.
Strapping Swede Dolph Lundgren got his start acting in Rocky IV in 1985, and he’s been working ever since. Other early films include Masters of the Universe, Men of War, Johnny Mnemonic and The Peacekeeper.
Most recently he starred in the action hit The Expendables. He returned for the sequel, which was released in 2012, and he is slated to appear in the third and fourth installments of the film. Yes...there are going to be four of those.
Tommy ‘Machine’ Gunn, Rocky V
In Rocky V, the titular character is forced to retire because of brain damage, so he takes on Tommy "Machine" Gunn as a protege.
Tommy "Machine" Gunn was played by real-life boxer Tommy Morrison. Unfortunately, his story doesn’t have a heartwarming ending like in the movies.
Six years after Rocky V was released in 1990, he tested positive for HIV—though he always maintained he didn’t have the virus. In the years prior and after, he struggled with drugs and alcohol and was arrested several times for various incidents.
Morrison attempted a few career comebacks over the years, with very limited success. In September 2013, he died tragically at the age of 44. His official cause of death was cardiac arrest, brought on by a blood infection.
William Gates, Hoop Dreams
William Gates was one of the two Chicago high school basketball players who were documented in 1994’s Hoop Dreams.
William Gates played high school basketball at St. Joseph’s, a private Catholic school in Chicago. He went on to play college ball at Marquette, although he never made it to the NBA.
Arthur Agee, Hoop Dreams
Arthur Agee was one of the two Chicago high school basketball players who were documented in 1994’s Hoop Dreams.
Arthur Agee played college basketball at Mineral Area College before earning a scholarship to Arkansas State, where he played for two years. Like Gates, Agee never realized his dream of playing in the NBA.
In the years following Hoop Dreams, Agee faced some serious personal struggles, including the murder of his father in 2004. Today his work is focused on his foundation, which seeks to help underprivileged kids.
Evelyn Gardner, A League of Their Own
Wife to a useless husband and mother to a terrible child, Evelyn Gardner took an awful lot of abuse in A League of Their Own. Most famously she was subjected to Jimmy Dugan’s tirade, “There’s no crying in baseball!”
Actress Britty Schram made her acting debut in the 1992 film Fathers & Sons. Her second role was in A League of Their Own, which was also released that year.
She found regular work through 2002, which is when she landed a co-starring role in the long-running comedy Monk. The show ended in 2009, and she is currently filming her first project since then.
Marla Hooch, A League of Their Own
If Marla Hooch had been born a boy, her father would have been talking to the Yankees. She wasn’t the best-looking lady in A League of Their Own, but she sure could hit!
From the looks of her IMDB page, actress Megan Cavanagh has actually had one of the most successful careers of the secondary characters in A League of Their Own.
Though she has had guest-starring roles on shows like Home Improvement, Will & Grace, Friends and The West Wing over the years, she has really made her living doing voiceover work.
Betty Spaghetti, A League of Their Own
Poor Betty Spaghetti. The first time we meet her in A League of Their Own, Jimmy Dugan is tearing up her husband’s baseball card. The last time we see her, Dugan is delivering the bad news that her husband had died in World War II.
The daughter of director Penny Marshall, actress Tracy Reiner got her acting start on the '80s sitcom Laverne & Shirley. She also had small roles in When Harry Met Sally, Beaches, Die Hard and Pretty Woman.
She was one of several cast members to sign on for the television series A League of Their Own, which didn’t last long. She’s had the occasional bit part in the years since, but today her main focus is on her husband and five children.
Wolf Stansson, D2: The Mighty Ducks
Wolf “The Dentist” Stansson is the evil coach of the evil Icelandic team in D2: The Mighty Ducks. He earned that nickname with a particularly bruising style of play.
One of Danish actor Carsten Norgaard’s first acting roles was on the smutty Showtime series Red Shoe Diaries in 1993. He’s worked sporadically in the U.S. since D2 was released two years later.
Most recently he starred in 10 episodes of Rita, a Danish television show that (from the looks of its promotional poster) looks to be about a sassy, chain-smoking teacher with a heart of gold.
Dean Portman, D2: The Mighty Ducks
Dean Portman came on board as one of the Goodwill Games ringers in D2: The Mighty Ducks. Though they didn’t get along at first, he and Fulton Reed quickly became “The Bash Brothers.”
Actor Aaron Lohr is a Los Angeles native and graduate of UCLA's theater school. In recent years he’s had guest-starring roles on show like The Mentalist, Blue Bloods, White Collar and Law & Order.
He appeared in the film adaptation of the famed Broadway musical Rent and is also a singer. A quick search of his name on YouTube brings up a number of videos from his live performances.
Marria, D2: The Mighty Ducks
Marria is by far the most likable of the Icelandic supervillains in D2: The Mighty Ducks.
Prior to her role in D2, Icelandic beauty Maria Ellingsen had a 13-episode run on the NBC soap opera Santa Barbara.
She has worked sporadically since then, mostly in Iceland. She also released a yoga (or JOGA) DVD in 2012.
Dwayne Robertson, D2: The Mighty Ducks
Another ringer who was brought in for D2: The Mighty Ducks, Dwayne Robertson is the lovable Texas cowboy.
Actor Ty O’Neal gave it a go in Hollywood but never really gained any traction. His post-The Mighty Ducks credits include a small role in The Postman in 1997 and an unaccredited appearance in Wild Wild West two years later—both were considered epic box-office flops.
These days he is keeping a low profile, living with his wife Christine in Sanger, Texas. The couple were married in 2005 during the Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo. Today they train quarter horses and occasionally travel on the PRCA rodeo circuit.
Daniel LaRusso, The Karate Kid
The protagonist in the first three Karate Kid films, Daniel LaRusso is the ultimate underdog.
Absolutely pigeonholed by his role in The Karate Kid franchise, actor Ralph Macchio hardly worked at all between 1989, when the last of the three films was released, and 1999.
By 2000, enough time had passed to make him a commodity again rather than a liability. A guest-starring role on Entourage in 2005, where he played himself, seemed to open the floodgates.
Macchio has been working on a fairly regular basis since then. Most recently he had a recurring role in the USA comedy Psych and has since filmed A Little Game, a TV show in which he is the lead.
Ali Mills, The Karate Kid
The ex-girlfriend of bad boy Johnny Lawrence, Ali Mills is the love interest of Daniel LaRusso in The Karate Kid.
A bona fide superstar of her day, Elisabeth Shue starred in Cocktail, Back to the Future Part II, Back to the Future Part III, Adventures in Babysitting and Soapdish in the years after The Karate Kid.
Her roles since 2000 have not been nearly as abundant, but she still works somewhat regularly. Since 2009, she has appeared in Curb Your Enthusiasm and Piranha 3D. In 2012 she landed a recurring role on CSI.
Johnny Lawrence, The Karate Kid
One of the most memorable bad guys in sports movie history, Johnny Lawrence is the defending All Valley Karate Tournament champion. A student at the Cobra Kai dojo, Lawrence is shown up by Daniel LaRusso.
Actor William Zabka played the villain so villainously in the '80s that his acting work was limited, due to typecasting, for more than a decade.
He’s been working more regularly since 2007 and has been enjoying a recent career resurgence, thanks to an epic guest-starring role on How I Met Your Mother in 2013.
Hanson Brothers, Slap Shot
The big, bad, bruising Hanson brothers come in as ringers and steal the show in the classic comedy Slap Shot.
Carlson Brothers and David Hanson
The Carlson brothers and David Hanson appeared in Slap Shot in 1977, Slap Shot 2: Breaking the Ice in 2002 and Slap Shot 3: The Junior League in 2008.
Outside of that, they’ve made a living making appearances as...the Hanson Brothers.
Scotty Smalls, The Sandlot
Scotty Smalls was one of the beloved characters in the 1993 classic, The Sandlot.
Tom Guiry has worked regularly since his breakout role in The Sandlot back in 1993. In the years since, he has appeared in Lassie, U-571, Scotland, Pa. and Black Hawk Down.
In recent years, acting roles have dried up for him and his once promising career. That probably has something to do with his 2013 arrest for headbutting a cop.
Squints, The Sandlot
Squints was one of the beloved characters in the 1993 classic, The Sandlot.
Actor Chauncey Leopardi is one of the more successful child actors to appear in The Sandlot, which isn’t saying all that much, considering how unimpressive (or nonexistent) the careers of his co-stars were.
He has appeared in Boy Meets World, Casper, The Larry Sanders Show, The Opposite of Sex, 7th Heaven, Freaks and Geeks, CSI, Gilmore Girls and The Sandlot: Heading Home. In 2013 he had a small role in the film Coldwater.
Also in 2013, Leopardi dealt with a very nasty divorce from his wife Stefani.
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