The top football stars have been glorified and celebrated by fans across the world. Many of whom have now become legends of football and some have found their way to films as well. Here is a look at some of the footballers that have also made a place for themselves in films after their football success.
On and off the field, the former English footballer has had a lot of success. He's married a former Spice Girl, lives in Los Angeles, is a UN goodwill ambassador, a professional model, and is friends with Hollywood's elite. Beckham has appeared in all three 'Goal' films as himself, with more than just kicking the ball on the screen. He also made a cameo appearance in a special episode of the British comedy sitcom 'Only Fools and Horses,' in which he mocked his modeling career.
The Brazilian football hero has also appeared in front of the camera. He has appeared in nearly a half-dozen projects, including television serials. There's the famous 'Escape to Victory' (1981) scene with his glorious slow-motion bicycle kick and him teaching Michael Caine a thing or two about on-field tactics. In 'A Minor Miracle' (1983), he assists a group of orphans attempting to save their home, and in 'Hotshot' (1987), an American soccer player attempting to make it big seeks inspiration and guidance from Pele. He even had a small cameo in his biopic, 'Pele'.
This former English footballer has a long history of violence against women, so it's no surprise that the film in which he tried his hand at acting was the ill-fated sequel to 'Basic Instinct', which featured sexual violence as one of its major themes.
Ian Wright has had a prolific career as a television and radio presenter, putting him squarely in the spotlight after his success on the pitch for the English national team and English clubs such as Arsenal and West Ham United. So, it wasn't exactly an unusual move when he signed on for 2011's 'Sun Of The Black Gun'. In the film, he plays the role of a British gangster.
Despite his controversial on-field behaviour for West Germany and Bayern Munich, he is considered one of the greatest footballers of all time and was named to the FIFA World Cup All-Time Team in 1994. But few people are aware that he has also starred in two action-adventure films, one of which is a German-language western. He played a frontier soldier helping Hardy Kruger's ranger plant potatoes in the spaghetti western 'Potato Fritz' in 1976, and he starred in the action-adventure 'Kunyonga - Mord In Afrika' in 1986.
During the 1980s, the current Real Madrid coach and former Italian midfielder dabbled in acting. 'The World Of Don Camillo', a 1983 Italian comedy, was about a priest who coaches the town's football team in a match against the "evil" Devils.
He currently coaches the 'Rangers' and was inducted into the Scottish Sports Hall of Fame in 2007. He is the fifth-highest goalscorer in the Scottish top-tier league's history. 'A Shot At Glory,' however, is a 2000 film that Ally McCoist would probably like to erase from his memory and otherwise impressive resume. McCoist portrayed a high-flying Arsenal footballer who was signed by a Scottish second-tier club managed by Robert Duvall and owned by Michael Keaton.
Eric Cantona, a French football legend, has long since retired, but he's made a successful transition to a full-time acting career. In the whimsical yet endearing film 'Looking for Eric,' he even played a version of himself (2009). His most recent film is 'The Salvation,' an upcoming Western starring actors Mads Mikkelsen and Eva Green.
Jones has had the most success transitioning from a professional football player to a professional actor. He's never looked back since making his acting debut in Guy Ritchie's British gangster film 'Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels' (1998). He frequently portrays tough guys, which is akin to his on-field persona as a brawler. He had a lot of success with 'Snatch,' in which he played the invincible Bullet Tooth, Tony, with an amazing monologue in a bar, and later played a disgraced footballer in 'Mean Machine,' but his moment of great infamy came thanks to his appearance as the Juggernaut in the superhero movie 'X-Men: The Last Stand.'
One of the most popular footballers of the current era, the Brazilian who plays for the French club Paris Saint Germain starred in the 2017 movie 'xXx: Return of Xander Cage'. The film also starred actor Vin Diesel and Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone.