The American Dream is basically the idea that every citizen has an equal opportunity to achieve success as long they have the determination and initiative to get them there. Typically, it’s attached to thoughts of two car garages and white picket fences which is adorably dated considering most modern day American dreamers can’t shake the aspiration of fame and fortune from their brains.
Whether that is your plan or not, the original definition still applies, and all the riches that accompany having your name in lights can be yours if you’re packing enough chutzpa, no matter what your background may be. And if you look through history you can find plenty of examples that prove this point, but not as many as recent as ‘The Governator’ himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
This is a man who left his home country, became known for having the biggest muscles in the entire universe, then became the biggest action star in the entire universe, and still had enough extra time to run the most populated state in America. That’s a feat rarely accomplished by even the most ambitious United States born citizen.
The thing is, even with his highly publicized life, there are still a smorgasbord of little tidbits the average person probably doesn’t know about the Austrian Giant, and with his upcoming role as host of The New Celebrity Apprentice he’s a hot ticket once again, so let’s get reacquainted with the big guy. Here are 15 things you didn’t know about Arnold Schwarzenegger:
15. He Spends A Lot Of Time In The Bedroom. Like, A Lot
Tom Arnold may not be the most reliable source. If you take a look at his track record in regards to pretty much any realm of his life (i.e. his marriage to Roseanne Barr, or his leading role in the aptly titled film, The Stupids) you’ll find he’s a notorious moron. However, Arnie still considers him a close friend since they co-starred in James Cameron’s high-budget action flick, True Lies, together in 1994. And since the two are thick as thieves, we’re lead to believe the goofball actor is telling the truth when he said Schwarzenegger does the deed no less than five times a day. That’s 35 times a week and 1,820 times a year for those of you keeping track at home. Arnold broke the news to Daily Star magazine back in 2012, a year after the former Governor split from his long-time wife, Maria Shriver, after being outed for giving the maid some after hours work (classic right?). And what’s the reason for Schwarzenegger’s extensive bedtime romps, you ask? Not womanizing, apparently, but rather to stay fit. I guess in your old age you find all types of new fangled diet fads.
14. Austrians Don’t Really Like Him
Before he started campaigning for the Governorship of California and made all of his political beliefs public knowledge, it was pretty difficult to find someone who wasn’t an Arnie fan. Sure, you can shake a fist at Twins, but c’mon, we’re talking about the most quotable movie actor in history, we’ll let a few bad projects slide. However, once the big man began talking like a rigid, right-wing conservative you saw his popularity drop in some. Turns out a large handful of that aforementioned “some” were in his home country of Austria. Back in 2005, when Schwarzenegger was governor of California, he decided to not pardon two men on death row before it was time for them to meet their demise despite a worldwide petition to save the second man, Stanley “Tookie” Williams, reformed leader of the Crips and Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Apparently, this infuriated Austrian liberals who not only called for the renaming of the Arnold Schwarzenegger sports stadium but also threatened to revoke his Austrian citizenship. Although the dust finally settled over the whole mess, you can imagine how much that type of outrage must have affected the former Governor.
13. He Predicted The Future
One of the first thing any fitness junkie will tell you once you’ve decided to trade in your family-sized bag of Cheetos for a gym membership is getting buff is all about setting attainable goals. For instance, you’ll tell yourself you’re going to lose three pounds by the end of the week rather than hoping to lose ten inches off your waistline by summer. However, being that he was already pretty jacked by age 15, Schwarzenegger apparently saw no reason to dream small and laid out a life goal that seems pretty damn outrageous on paper. According to many of his childhood friends, Arnie’s life plan was to move to America, become a famous actor, and marry a Kennedy. And that’s exactly how that sh*t went down. After starring in Hollywood’s biggest movies, Arnold married Maria Shriver, for twenty-five years, who is, in fact, a niece of John, Robert and Ted Kennedy.
12. He Wasn’t Supposed To Be The Terminator
Arnold Schwarzenegger probably wouldn’t be Arnold Schwarzenegger if it wasn’t for his iconic role as the cybernetic organism, The Terminator, in the 1984 action film of the same name, and according to Hollywood legend, he almost wasn’t. Director James Cameron originally wanted Schwarzenegger for the lead role of Kyle Reese, and at that point in his career Schwarzenegger was trying to build notoriety around playing heroes, but he had his concerns about whoever was cast as the deadly mechanical villain. “I told Cameron: ‘One thing that concerns me is that whoever is playing the Terminator, if it’s O.J. Simpson or whoever, it’s very important that he gets trained the right way,” Schwarzenegger wrote in his memoir, Total Recall, “because if the guy is really a machine he won’t blink when he shoots.” In the end, Arnold didn’t have much faith in anyone else doing the role justice and picked up the shotgun himself, making sure everything was done perfectly and even practiced disassembling and reassembling the weapon daily for weeks prior to filming.
11. He Did Time In Military Prison
Back in 1960s Austria it was legally required that all 18-year-old eligible males serve one year of service in the Austrian Army, and in 1965, being the law-abiding young man he was, Schwarzenegger followed suit, that is until the timing conflicted with his dream of bodybuilding. During basic training, Schwarzenegger went AWOL so he could compete for the title of Junior Mr. Europe, his first of many competitions. He left with a first place trophy but had to spend a week in military prison upon his return. “Participating in the competition meant so much to me I didn’t carefully think through the consequences,” he later said. Good thing he didn’t, two years later he became the youngest person to ever win the Mr. Universe title and the rest is history.
10. He Saved A Man’s Life
Back in 2004, Arnie and friends were enjoying a pleasant day at the beach while vacationing in Hawaii when suddenly things took a wrong turn. According to reports, a nearby man began to struggle in the deep water and told the closest man to him he was cramping up. Lucky for him, the closest man to him happened to be the man who defeated the predator. Schwarzenegger wasted no time and scooped up the man AND his boogie board and pulled them 100 yards to the Maui shore. That’s the length of a football field. I would bet most people reading this, hell even the man writing this, couldn’t run the length of a football field let alone swim it while hauling a full grown man and his favorite pool toy. That’s why it’s important to stay fit people, you never know when you’re going to have to save a life in an exotic location.
9. He Was Too Muscular To Be Put On Film
You don’t become Mr. Olympia by being some run of the mill pipsqueak off the street. Oh no, you take home that trophy only if you’ve put in enough iron-pumping hours to make your muscles so big no manmade device can contain them, even movie cameras. Turns out back in 1982 when Schwarzenegger was filming what would be his big break, Conan the Barbarian, he was forced to tone down his workout because his ginormous biceps made it nearly impossible for him to wield a sword properly. And he was required to perform his own stunts (as he was on many other projects) because the studio couldn’t find a stunt double remotely close to his size and stature, an issue that actually deterred him from getting many acting jobs at the start of his career.
8. His Physique Isn’t Just Good… It’s Perfect
Physical perfection is a heavily sought-after dream for many people around the globe, and if you want to know what that might look like, you don’t have to look any further than Arnold Schwarzenegger, who the Guinness Book of World Records called “the most perfectly developed man in the history of the world.” Wow. Now, that’s a title with a hefty bag of bragging rights stapled onto it. According to a website I just found, there have been approximately 107,602,707,791 humans born on planet earth to date, and not one of them has had a better body than the Austrian Oak. Ever. He could travel back in time to any period throughout history and hairy dudes with clubs would stop hunting and be like, “Nice pecs.”
7. His Parents Tried To Beat The Gay Out Of Him
Adolescent boys typically slap posters of bikini-clad babes on their walls, but a determined young lad like Arnold Schwarzenegger veered in a slightly different direction and covered his room floor to ceiling in images of oiled up musclemen. “Why,” you ask? Well, if you ask Arnold he’d tell it was because, as an aspiring bodybuilder, he wanted to surround himself with photographs of his heroes. However, if you asked his parents, they’ll tell you it was because he was on his way to becoming a full-blown gay man and the only way to counteract the process was with extreme force. “He ran after me with a belt and beat me,” Schwarzenegger told Xposure. Seems extreme, but we’re talking about Austrian police chiefs (his parents were both police chiefs) in the early 1960s. Luckily, it didn’t rub off on young Arnie, famously commenting “Hasta la vista,” in response to one of his followers un-liking him due to his support of gay marriage.
6. He Thinks Sequels Suck As Much As You Do
The original is always better. Everyone knows that. The only time a “part II” ever contends with a “part I” is if it’s a part of a trilogy, and one person who takes this knowledge of pop culture into consideration is Arnold Schwarzenegger. Ever since he decided to follow up the 1982 box office hit Conan the Barbarian with the 1984 box office bomb, Conan the Destroyer, he’s turned his nose up to almost every sequel pitch (excluding The Terminator and The Expendables). Think about having follow up Schwarzenegger storylines to movies like Total Recall, True Lies or Predator. We’re talking franchise money. Big time franchise money. And with the original star they actually might have been watchable.
5. He Likes Kindergarten Cop As Much As You Do
If you’ve never seen Kindergarten Cop allow me to bring you up to speed in terms of plot: a badass cop has to go undercover as a kindergarten teacher in order to catch a drug dealer. Classic, right? Yeah, Arnold thinks so too. During a visit to The Late Late Show with James Corden in 2015, Schwarzenegger said out of all the movies he’s ever starred in (remember that’s including HUGE game changing movies like Terminator 2: Judgment Day and Predator) the one where he screams at five-year-olds is his absolute favorite. And many fans who love hollering the movies famous, “It’s not a tuuuumor,” line would agree with him. He told Corden he loved working with children and even said, in a way, it prepared him to be the Governor of California. Apparently, the golden state government is filled with toddlers on a sugar high.
4. He Basically IS Conan The Barbarian
When I say Arnold Schwarzenegger is basically Conan the Barbarian, I don’t mean he looks like him physically (which he obviously does). No, what I mean is their lives are strangely similar. Check it out, Conan was born in a small village and Schwarzenegger was born in Thal, a small village in Austria. Conan becomes immensely strong after years of slavery and Schwarzenegger got super jacked after years of intense bodybuilding training. Conan then becomes a famous gladiator and indulges in the finer things life has to offer and Schwarzenegger became a Hollywood actor propelling himself to fame. And the real kicker, Conan then turns his back on his old lifestyle and is eventually crowned king and Schwarzenegger ditched the lights of Los Angeles for the governor’s office. I mean, their lives aren’t identical but that’s pretty uncanny. If at some point Arnie gets crowned as an actual king, which isn’t completely out of the question, then he might as well change his name to Conan.
3. He Had No Idea His Son Was His Son
By now it’s public knowledge Schwarzenegger was sleeping around on his ex-wife, Maria Shriver. Hell, it was public knowledge in 2011. If you haven’t kept up with the news for the past six years or so, allow me to fill you in. Back in 2011, Schwarzenegger divorced Maria Shriver, his wife of twenty-five years after it was exposed that he had been sleeping with their maid, Mildred Patricia Baena, for oh, only the past fourteen years or so. Somewhere within that time, Baena gave birth to a bouncing baby boy whose father was, you guessed it, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Thing was, the identity of his father remained a mystery for a massive chunk of those formidable years, even to Schwarzenegger. The former California Governor has said he had no clue the boy was his until he started to see a resemblance once the kid had aged. Although gradual, that really isn’t the smoothest way to find out you have a son. And the situation should seem slightly familiar to Arnold because…
2. His Dad Didn’t Believe He Was Arnold’s Biological Father
This little factoid pretty much set the stage for a troublesome family life as you could imagine. Papa Gustav Schwarzenegger had suspicions that his second son, little Arnold Schwarzenegger didn’t have a drop of his DNA in him, unlike his first son, Meinhard, who had oodles of that Schwarzenegger blood surging through his veins. Thus the reason why Gustav reportedly didn’t care too much for Arnold and favored Meinhard a great deal. We’ll get to discussing his father more in a second, but in regards to his big brother, they didn’t exactly keep in touch after Arnold left for the states. He died in a car accident in 1971 and according to Schwarzenegger’s then girlfriend, Barbara Baker, he was stone cold emotionless about the tragedy and never and I mean NEVER spoke about his brother at all. But if you have political dreams and your big brother is the favored son of Gustav Schwarzenegger, it may be for the best to distance yourself because…
1. His Dad Was A Nazi
You read that correctly. Talk about gossip. Speculation of Gustav’s past began back in 1990 at which point Arnold requested Simon Weisenthal Center to dig a little bit deeper and they found his army records and his Nazi Party membership. This whole mess was kept pretty quiet until Arnold decided he wanted to become governor in 2003 and suddenly the LA Times just had to know more. Turns out ol’ Gustav voluntarily joined the Nazis in 1938 and even tried to become part of the Sturmabteilung (SA) which were basically street authority for Hitler when he was gaining power. You may know them better as “Brownshirts.” What’s interesting about this band of ruffians that Gustav Schwarzenegger tried to join, was that they were soon purged by Hitler himself because he thought they were too violent and threatened his new political power. Now, Arnold has claimed to have never liked his father much. Apparently, he was an abusive jerk, and Arnold even skipped his funeral. All of which is very understandable, a Nazi who wanted to hang out with a group of guys who were too violent for Adolph effing Hitler, he’s probably pretty unlikable.