Stone Cold warms up

Stone Cold warms up
Former wrestler Steve Austin.

Since retiring from the world of professional wrestling in 2003, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) superstar Steve Austin has paved a way for himself in Hollywood.

Better known by his ring name Stone Cold, Austin has starred in action flicks The Condemned and The Expendables, in Adam Sandler comedies like The Longest Yard and Grown Ups 2 and in a slew of direct-to-video B-movies.

So you would think the 50-year-old Texan is following in the footsteps of other WWE fighters-turned-actors like Dwayne Johnson, Dave Bautista (Guardians Of The Galaxy) and Kevin Nash (Magic Mike).

Turns out Austin doesn't like acting all that much. He told The New Paper over the phone from Los Angeles yesterday: "I have made probably eight or 10 movies and I enjoyed it, but I don't enjoy it as much as hosting reality television. I find it more fun being myself and not a character in a movie."

Austin is the host of new reality TV series Steve Austin's Broken Skull Challenge, which airs every Wednesday at 9pm on KIX (StarHub TV Ch 518) and KIX HD (Singtel TV Ch 309).

He invites eight elite male and female athletes to an area just outside of Los Angeles, designed to represent his Broken Skull Ranch in South Texas, to compete in head-to-head battles.

The contestants are eliminated over a series of challenges with fearsome names like Pulverizer and Pain Train, with the last one standing and facing a tough obstacle course known as the Skullbuster for a shot at the US$10,000 (S$13,000) cash prize.

He said: "A third of my year is dedicated to my podcast and about a third to half of my year is dedicated to the reality TV stuff. Two months are dedicated to being at my ranch in South Texas during hunting season.

"When I have other projects that take up the rest of the year, it doesn't really give me the time to do acting.

"Then again, acting is probably the least of what I like to do."

Austin calls Johnson one of his "favourite guys to work with in the ring" and "the biggest movie star in the world", adding that he's "extremely proud" of what Johnson has accomplished, making a successful transition from WWE to Hollywood.

But that career path is not for him.

He said he reads scripts on occasion and if something really piques his interest, it would have to be the right part at the right time, like his latest flick that will be released this year, Echo Effect starring Michael Jai White.

Austin said: "There was a window of time that allowed me the opportunity to do that movie.

"I worked with Michael about three or four years ago and he's one of the greatest mixed martial artists in the world. We became really good friends. The chance to collaborate again was the biggest reason why I signed on for it."

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