Thursday, November 17, 2011

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Born on July 30, 1947, near Graz, Austria, Arnold Schwarzenegger first became famous as a bodybuilder. He immigrated to the United States in the late 1960s and became a leading figure in several popular 1980s action movies, including Conan the Barbarian. After years of blockbuster movie roles, Schwarzenegger went into politics, becoming governor of California.

Professional bodybuilder, actor, California governor. Born on July 30, 1947, near Graz, Austria. Schwarzenegger first became famous as a bodybuilder. He began strength training in his teens and went on to become a world champion bodybuilder, winning numerous awards for his amazing physique. He won the Mr. Universe title five times and the Mr. Olympia title six times. He immigrated to the United States in the late 1960s.

After acting in a few small parts, Schwarzenegger received a Golden Globe Award for Best Newcomer for his performance in Stay Hungry (1976). He was also featured in Pumping Iron (1977), a bodybuilding documentary. With his intense physical strength and size, Schwarzenegger was a natural for action films. He became a leading figure in several popular 1980s action movies, including Conan the Barbarian (1982). Schwarzenegger also starred as a deadly machine from the future in The Terminator (1984). The science-fiction drama spawned two sequels—Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003).

An audience favorite, Schwarzenegger made several more popular movies, such as True Lies (1994) and Batman & Robin (1997). He even tried his hand at comedy with some successes, including Twins (1988), Kindergarten Cop (1990), and Junior (1994). As the decade drew to close, Schwarzenegger's popularity appeared to be waning.

Besides his work in films, Schwarzenegger was a businessman and fitness advocate. He was an investor in the Planet Hollywood restaurant chain. Appointed by President George Bush, Schwarzenegger served as the chairman of the President's Council on Physical Education and Sports in the early 1990s. He has also supported the Special Olympics and Inner City Games for many years.

A vocal member of the Republican Party, Schwarzenegger campaigned to become governor of California in 2003. During his run for office, he was accused of sexual assault, but no charges were filed. Schwarzenegger went on to win the election. As governor, he worked to improve the state's financial situation, to promote new businesses, and to protect the environment. In 2006, Schwarzenegger won easily won his bid for re-election.

His second term in office did not run as smoothly. Schwarzenegger struggled to help the state through difficult financial times. After leaving office in January 2011, he has sought to revive his career in the entertainment industry. Schwarzenegger announced plans to work with famed comic book creator Stan Lee on a new animated series inspired by his time in office. He will voice a character known as the Governator.

Only a few months after leaving office, Schwarzenegger made another announcement. He and his wife, journalist Maria Shriver, made their decision to separate public in May. To some, they seemed like a political odd couple. Schwarzenegger has been known for his conservative Republican views while Shriver is a member of the Kennedy political dynasty, a force within the Democratic Party for decades. He had been married to Shriver for twenty-five years, and the couple has four children: Katherine, Christina, Patrick, and Christopher.

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