His is a rags-to-riches story that makes for a good Hollywood movie.
Actually, it sort of made it to the big screen two years ago in Magic Mike.
Against all odds, stripper-turned-actor Channing Tatum is set to claim the box-office crown with the release of his latest movie 22 Jump Street, opening here tomorrow.
The buddy comedy sequel to the 2012 hit - 21 Jump Street reaped over US$201 million (S$250 million) worldwide - continues the misadventures of cop partners, dim-witted jock Jenko (Tatum) and nerdy Schmidt (Jonah Hill), as they go undercover in a college to take down a drug ring.
Tatum, who grew up in the bayous of Mississippi in southern US before moving east to Florida in his teens, was an aimless college drop-out. Now at 34, this Hollywood hunk is on a mission to climb to the top rungs of showbiz and it should be an easy task. Seriously, who can take on Tatum now?
COOL ABOUT HIS HOT BOD
Tatum has a body that men envy and women go gaga over. He was not named People magazine's Sexiest Man Alive in 2013 for nothing.
In 22 Jump Street, Jenko's sex appeal boosts his popularity in college and his nifty footwork makes him a favourite on the football pitch.
But Tatum's chiselled physique that we all drooled over in Magic Mike does not come easy - he told GQ magazine recently that if he was not into sports, he would have given in to his "inner fat kid".
A self-proclaimed cake lover, Tatum said he "can completely lose (himself) in just absolutely satisfying things - a really amazing cheeseburger, a pizza, good fries, a beer".
In a separate interview with Ellen DeGeneres, Tatum told the US talk show host that he enjoyed time off from work because he "gets to be fappy - fat and happy".