25 Facts That Will Make You Love Jason Statham Even More Than You Already Do
We all know him as the British action movie star, often portraying tough, macho characters that we just can’t help but love.
An avid kung-fu and karate fan, Statham insists on performing his own stunts and pursued a vast array of interests before he embarked on a career in acting.
The son of a London street seller, The Stath has gone from rags and riches, even dating top models such as Kelly Brook. As if he hadn’t endeared himself to us enough already, here are some facts that you might not have known about the celebrity macho-man.
25. He was in a band with his brother and dad
When he was a young teen, Statham and his family decided to start a band.
He took on the role of the drummer, with his brother on guitar and his dad providing vocals.
It seems Statham’s urge to hit things never really left him…
24. He used to be a professional diver representing Britain
He’s one of Hollywood’s biggest movie stars, but did you know that Statham used to have a successful diving career?
The young Statham was scouted by Britain’s national diving team, which he was a part of for a total of twelve years. Statham stated that his time on the team was a ‘great experience’, and explained that he was taught ‘discipline and focus’.
We’d definitely not pass up on the chance to see him in a speedo!
23. He loves to play pranks on people
Although he often plays serious roles in his movies, it seems Statham has a more light-hearted side. Whilst working on the set of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, producer Matthew Vaughan arrived in his brand new porche.
When he left, he heard metal grinding in the vehicle and, in a panic, he drove the car straight to the mechanic.
He was left red-faced when he realised the noise was a result of Statham having filled his boots with horseshoes.
22. He failed his driving test three times
The son of a street seller, Statham picked up some bad habits whilst driving around with his father. By the time he was ready to take his test, Statham had been driving around illegally for over two years.
His dodgy motor skills resulted in him failing his test a total of three times.
Not quite what you would expect from The Transporter star!
21. He performs all his own movie stunts
Unlike most movie stars, Statham isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty. In fact, he went so far as to publicly speak out against stars who don’t perform their own stunts, saying ‘they are not doing what they are supposed to be doing’.
It seems Statham has high expectations, making it clear that he thought only actors who performed their own stunts were true superheroes. One of his most challenging stunts was during a helicopter fight scene in Crank, where he hung from the chopper 2000 feet over LA.
The only thing keeping him suspended was a small belt and thin wire. A very strong wire, we hope.
20. He visited a real prison to prepare for one role
Never one to go un unprepared, Statham decided to extensively research for his upcoming part in Death Race by visiting a maximum-security prison in California.
One of the prisoners even recognised Statham, telling him he looks just like, well, himself…
The said prisoner was a mass murderer known for decapitating his victims. He clearly had quite the memory for faces. Or heads…
19. He was a male model
After being spotted at a diving event, Statham was recruited as a male model.
Although he doesn’t have conventional boy-band good looks, it seems Statham’s rugged style was just what agencies were after.
‘We chose Jason because we wanted our model to look like a normal guy’, explained a spokesperson for French Connection back in 1995. ‘His look is just right for now-very masculine and not too male-modelly’.
18. He had a close dice with death making The Expendables 3
So, we know that Statham performs his own stunts, but apparently these things don’t always got to plan. During the filming of an action scene for Expendables 3, Statham was driving a three-ton stunt truck.
In a serious stroke of bad luck, the brakes on the truck failed, sending it plummeting off the cliff into the sea below. Fortunately, Statham utilised his super-hero strength and was able to break free of the rapidly sinking truck.
‘It’s the closest I’ve ever come to drowning’, he reflected. ‘It was a very harrowing experience’.
17. He was kicked out of the Playboy mansion
Way back in 2008, Statham had the honour (ahem!) of attending one of Hugh Hefner’s (in)famous Playboy mansion parties.
However, it seems his night of glitz and glamour was short lived. After just a few hours, he was escorted from the property by security. You’re probably thinking this was due to drunkenness or unruly behaviour, but no.
It was actually because Statham refused to pose for pictures with the Playmates. Poor Jason, it seems his big night out didn’t exactly go to plan.
16. He’s a big hit with the ladies
Although Statham tries to keep his private life away from the spotlight, he’s had some seriously high-profile girlfriends.
He started dating British model Kelly Brook when she was just 18, and even popped the question before the pair split in 2004. Statham is currently in a relationship with his now fiancé supermodel Rosie Huntington-Whitely.
They now have a son together
15. He became a first-time father at the age of 49
Their son, Jack Oscar, was born in June 2017.
Statham’s fiancé described the experience of parenthood as ‘magical’.
The pair keep their son relatively shielded from the spotlight, although they have shared several snaps of intimate family moments, including an Instagram post of Jack sat on his dad’s lap during a flight.
14. He’s made appearances in several music videos
Far from the the serious, big-budget actor we all know and love, Statham’s first music video feature was in The Shamen’s ‘Comin’ On’. With oiled up muscles and sporting a classic shaved head, Statham gyrates to the beat, clad only in small, leopard print hot pants.
He also popped o in the video for Dream a Little Dream of Me by The Beautiful South.
Rather tame compared to the aforementioned video, he is seen briefly sitting in a cinema. Fully clothed (sorry!).
13. He was the focus of a scientific study
According to Times Higher Education, the Manchester University University Press commissioned an academic study to analyse the impact of Statham on British and American films industries from 1998 to 2018.
The academics behind the study are aiming to show the changing face of British cinematic masculinity.
Professor Robert Shail explained further, saying ‘by focusing on his diversity, the book analyses his personality across a variety of media platforms’.
12. The villain in Ultimate Spider-Man was modelled on him
Writer Brian Michael Benis is the author of the comic book series Ultimate Spider Man, and a huge fan of Statham’s chiselled looks.
So much so in fact, that he instructed the artist Mark Bagely to base the villain, Vulture, on him.
With Statham’s rugged good looks and tones muscles, it’s not hard to see why.
11. He made an income selling stolen goods
Following in his father’s footsteps, Statham made some extra cash by hustling fake perfume and jewellery on the streets before he embarked on his Hollywood career.
In a classic case of art mirroring life, it was his dodgy past that landed him in a role as a con-artist in Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.
Statham rarely mentions his shady former life, only jokingly mentioning that the goods ‘didn’t fall off a lorry, they were pushed and we caught them’.
10. He flogged his street goods to Guy Ritchie
Statham was introduced to Ritchie through his modelling gig at French Connection. He was looking for a bad-ass street hustler-type to star in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.
Richie asked Statham to sell him some knock of jewellery so that he could assess his skills. Statham obliged, using his real-life slogging experience.
Ritchie immediately knew Statham was perfect for the part and wrote the role of Bacon with him in mind.
9. He was (nearly) arrested for joy riding
Way back in 2010, Statham had a close run-in with the law whilst partying at Coachella with his then-girlfriend Kristin Cavallari. The pair decided to abscond in a vehicle which led to them being pursued by the cops.
‘What was this vehicle?’ I hear you ask. A Lambourghini? An Aston Martin? Not quite. It was, in fact, a golf cart. We bet that was quite the high speed chase!
Once the Palm Springs police eventually caught up with the troublesome twosome, they were ordered to return the cart and head back to their hotel room immediately.
8. He was covered in syrup for The Transporter movie
Everyone remembers Statham’s legendary ‘oil slick’ fight scene in this iconic movie.
In the scene, his character Frank Martin is tasked with taking out a seemingly infinate amount of villainous opponents.
One of his most inventive tactics was to tip a vat of crude oil over himself and his surroundings. The oil is actually chocolate syrup. We wouldn’t mind helping to clear that up!
7. He’s a skilled martial artist
The actor participates in a range of fighting disciplines, including judo and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Statham says it’s the hobby that has benefitted his acting career the most, explaining that is allows him to provide ‘action in an authentic manner’.
His old friend, director Guy Ritchie, is also a black belt in jiu-jitsu and a brown belt in karate.
Apparently the pair have even been known to spar on occasion, with Statham saying ‘we’d be moving all the furniture out of the way in the hotel room, trying to choke each other’. Each to their own!
6. His movies have made more than 1.5 billion in the US alone
One of the most popular Hollywood actors of all time, Statham certainly isn’t shy of earning a few bucks. In total, Statham’s filmography has raked in over 1.5 billion in the US, with a worldwide standing of 5.1 billion.
The Fast and Furious movies make up a high bulk of this.
Statham is also very aware of what type of role brings in the big bucks, saying he knows people are drawn to his big-budget, high-flying action movies.
5. He grew up with Vinnie Jones
The pair met at school when they were just teens, and have been firm friends ever since.
Ex-footballer Jones introduced Statham to the sport, leading to Statham taking up football and playing on his grammar school’s team.
Statham and Jones have since worked on several acting projects together, including sports comedy film Mean Machine.
4. He co-owned a fish and chip shop
Back in 2011, it was reported that Statham and his old pal Vinnie Jones were set to open up a chip shop together.
The Brit duo decided to name the venture ‘Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Haddock’ in a nod to the classic film in which the pair previously starred in.
A source close to the pair was quoted saying ‘he may live in Hollywood but he’s as British as, well, fish and chips’.
3. He comes from a musical family
Statham’s father, Barry, was predominantly a street seller, although he would perform as a lounge singer whenever he had the chance.
He always dreamed of performing at a strip club in Vegas, a dream which his son would go on to help him realise.
Statham’s brother is also a singer, accompanying himself on guitar and uploading videos on to Facebook.
2. He has an age gap relationship
In true Hollywood star, there is a pretty noticeable age gap between Statham and his fiance Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.
She was just 22 when the pair met, making Statham 42 at the time.
However, it seems that the 20 year age gap hasn’t held the couple back, and judging by their Instagram snaps, the pair are still going strong.
1. He swam with sharks in Fiji
It seems Statham, like most of his on screen characters, truly does have no fear. In preparation for his role in The Meg, Statham flew to Fiji for the ultimate diving experience and the chance to get up close and personal with a group of bull sharks.
Some of the sharks were a whopping three metres in length, yet the close proximity didn’t seem to put Statham on edge.
In fact, he was even quoted saying ‘you get quite relaxed…It’s quite a tranquil sort of thing’. Hmm, if you say so…