Jason Statham is an English actor who’s known primarily for playing action roles. He’s proved his athleticism time and time again, but was he ever in the military?
There is no evidence to suggest that Jason Statham has ever been in the military or the armed forces. He was born in Derbyshire, England in 1967 and was sporty and athletic from a young age, and was even a competitive diver before pursuing a career in modeling and acting.
Read on to learn more about Jason Statham’s different careers and the stunts he performs in his movies.
Jason Statham has never been in the military, but his talents are broad and often surprising. The action hero the world has come to know may not be instantly taken for a former competitor diver, and yet Jason Statham was exactly that.
Growing up, Statham was always athletic and played soccer alongside practicing his diving. Though rumors have suggested that Statham competed in the Olympics, this isn’t the case.
However, in his own words, Statham competed in “pretty much everything else”, including the 1992 World Championships. He was a member of Britain’s National Diving Squad and was very dedicated to the hobby.
In an interview with IGN, Statham said of his diving, “it was a great experience, you know, to travel the world and compete at a certain level. It teaches you discipline, focus, and certainly keeps you out of trouble”.
It was this talent for selling goods which eventually allowed the former diver to break into acting. Director Guy Ritchie cast him in his movie ‘Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels’ after learning about his past.
According to Statham, “the character I played was loosely based on what I used to do, so it was just me coming and doing what I did every day anyway. And that was how I broke into acting”.
Breaking Into Modelling
Before his acting career really took off, Statham also did his fair share of modeling, beginning with a contract with retailer French Connection who said at the time, “his look is just right for now – very masculine and not too male-modelly”.
Other brands also decided they wanted a piece of his image, and he modeled for sports brands, Levis, and Tommy Hilfiger, not to mention a few appearances in music videos.
Jason Statham has been dubbed “one of the preeminent action heroes of a generation” and has played an immense number of roles on screen since landing firmly on his feet in the movie industry.
Whilst he has said that actors who perform their own stunts, such as Jackie Chan, are a huge inspiration for him, he often isn’t allowed to do his stunts, as is the case for many high-profile actors in big movies.
However, he recalls in an interview that lower budget movies, such as one he appeared in called ‘The Transporter’, sometimes can’t afford stunt doubles. In that movie, Statham performed all the stunts himself.
As for bigger movies, Statham says, “we’re pretty smart about not putting ourselves in harm’s way”, adding that for the production companies, “it’s just one of those risks they don’t want to take”.
He’s perhaps best known for roles in the ‘Fast & Furious’ franchise, ‘The Mechanic’, and ‘The Italian Job’, although his list of credits is extensive. Whilst his films generally seem him play similar characters in the same genre, this consistency has given him an enduring fanbase.
Whilst not in the military, Statham has clearly dabbled in more than one career, though his position as a British action hero is the one that has lasted.
Watch Jason Statham talk to Mark Wright about stunts in the YouTube video below.