Last February, during a swing through South Korea, Rihanna told MTV Asia that she had dreams of becoming a Hollywood superstar.
“I would love to get into comedic movies,” the 22-year-old said. “As well as action. I love action. I would love to play a badass one day.”
Well, a badass she very well might be, as she’s signed onto “Battleship,” a sci-fi action flick based on the classic board game and co-starring Taylor Kitsch and Alexander Skarsgård. Of course, this isn’t the first time a celebrated singer has ditched the recording studio for the soundstage. As Rihanna boards “Battleship,” she joins a long line of artists-turned-actresses. Let’s take a look back at the first movie roles from some our favorite singers.
Beyoncé in “Austin Powers in Goldmember”
No disrespect to the 2001 MTV movie “Carmen: A Hip Hopera,” but 2002’s “Goldmember” was Beyoncé’s first turn on the big screen. And what a debut it was. She essentially played herself, albeit a ’70s version of herself with super high hair and a handgun, but that is exactly what Beyoncé needed. The role didn’t require very much in terms of acting chops and gave her the chance to get comfortable in front of the camera. Veteran comedic talent like Mike Myers, Seth Green and Michael Caine got the laughs, while Beyoncé benefited from simply sharing the frame. “Goldmember” grossed almost $300 million worldwide, and she went on to star in the critically acclaimed “Dreamgirls” a few years later.
Madonna in “A Certain Sacrifice”
Madge’s first high-profile role arrived in 1985 with “Desperately Seeking Susan,” but she actually shot her first movie six years earlier. The low-budget “A Certain Sacrifice,” a sex-and-violence filled story set in New York’s Lower East Side, languished on the shelf for years until Madonna hit the mainstream. She actually did everything she could to prevent the film’s release, but “Certain Sacrifice” eventually got a home video release. Madonna might not be proud of the flick, but it certainly didn’t have a negative effect on her Hollywood career. She went on to star in a slew of glitzy productions, including “Evita,” for which she won a Golden Globe in 1997.
Queen Latifah in “Jungle Fever”
Latifah signed her first record deal when she was just 17. By the time she was 21, she’d also landed a small role in Spike Lee’s “Jungle Fever.” She went on to meatier roles in “House Party 2″ and “Juice,” opposite Tupac Shakur. By the new millennium, she had an Oscar nomination for “Chicago” on her résumé and a string of starring credits to her name.
Britney Spears in “Crossroads”
At perhaps the height of her fame, Spears took on a starring role in 2002’s “Crossroads,” a road-trip story featuring musical interludes and the talents of Dan Aykroyd and Zoe Saldana. The film was a critical dud and a box-office disappointment, and Spears has yet to get another chance at the big screen. In recent years, she’s contented herself with cameo appearances in “How I Met Your Mother.”
Taylor Swift in “Valentine’s Day”
The country superstar appeared as herself in 2009’s “Hannah Montana: The Movie,” but not until this year’s hit ensemble comedy, “Valentine’s Day,” did Swift slip into an acting role. She played a high school student who falls for her classmate, played by none other than Taylor Lautner. No word yet what her next movie project might be, but her, “Valentine’s” director Garry Marshall is gearing up for his next ensemble flick, “New Year’s Eve.” Ms. Swift, ya interested?
Who is your favorite musician-turned-actor? Talk about it in the comments.
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