Tuesday Tunes: From Singing to Acting (Part 2)

In a previous post I discussed the struggles that some pop stars face in trying to cross over from singing to acting. Performers such as Jessica Simpson, Vanilla Ice and 50 Cent just couldn’t quite make it work. However, that is not to say that the transition is impossible. Women like Liza Minnelli, Bette Middler and Barbara Streisand can switch from silver screen to center stage without a seconds thought. Old Hollywood stars like Fred Astaire could do it all while Ginger Rogers did it backwards in high heels. In more recent years, pop stars such as Justin Timberlake, Jennifer Lopez and even Beyonce have been trying their hand at big screen roles with varying amounts of success. Today we celebrate the men and women of showbiz who managed to move from stage to screen with apparent ease and minimal Razzies.

1. Cher

Cher. No second name necessary.
Cher is a true A-lister legend. Starting out with her husband, Sonny, Cher gained fame for hit songs such as ‘Baby Don’t Go’ and ‘I Got You Babe’. Sadly, the two eventually parted ways but Cher continued her successful career as a solo act with hits like ‘Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves‘ and ‘Dark Lady‘. However, the talent didn’t end there; Cher won an Oscar and a Golden Globe for her performance in Moonstruck, she won at the Cannes Film Festival for her role in Mask and she received an Oscar nomination for her part in Silkwood. These days, at age 67, Cher is still performing live shows and producing new music, her latest album ‘Woman’s World’ is set to be released September 24th

2. Will Smith

Will Smith: The Fresh Prince
It seems that Will Smith can do no wrong. Starting off as a musician, The Fresh Prince and DJ Jazzy Jeff quickly gained popularity for their energetic performances and radio-friendly lyrics. It wasn’t long before Smith was picked up by NBC for a semi-autobiographical show The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Following thisSmith’s undeniably charm and talent landed him in numerous blockbuster hits including Bad Boys, Independence Day and The Pursuit of Happyness. Today, Smith continues his successful acting career with his son Jaden, and continues to charm the audience of The Graham Norton Show as the Fresh Prince.

 3. Jennifer Hudson

Jennifer Hudson: Dreamgirl
Jennifer Hudson proves that losing a reality talent shows like American Idol might just be the best thing for your career. Although she came in 7th place on the show in 2004, she has since gained so much fame and success that she has been asked to come back as a judge in 2014. Hudson started out singing gospel and performing in the American Idol summer tour but soon transitioned on to the big screen in her Oscar winning role as Effie White in Dreamgirls. Next was a series of successful roles in movies such as Sex and The City, The Secret Life of Bees and a regular spot on the TV show Smash. Hudson shows no signs of stopping her singing or acting career any time soon and for that we can all be thankful.

4. Jared Leto

Jared Leto. So many hair colors.
Jared Leto may best be known as the lead singer and guitarist of American rock band ’30 Seconds to Mars’, however he has also appeared in over 20 feature films. Like so many others, Leto pursued his singing career in LA, but it just so happened that he took some acting classes on the side. This would later pay off as he landed the role of Jordan on My So Called Life alongside Claire Danes as well as numerous other movie roles. In 1998 he founded ’30 Seconds to Mars’ while simultaneously appearing in hit movies such as Fight Club, Requiem for a Dream and Lord of War. Basically, he owns multitasking. 

5. Mark Wahlberg

Marky Mark Whalberg
Mark Wahlberg began his career as a bad boy rapper who, along with his hip-hop group, were known as Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch. The singer would often perform shirtless with his boxers on show which led to a modeling contract with Calvin Klein. You just couldn’t make this stuff up. Eventually, the band’s success came to a crashing end but Wahlberg picked himself up and started a highly successful career as both an actor and producer. His roles have ranged from disturbing psycho-stalker in Fear to a borderline pornographic part in Boogie Nights; he has shown ability in both serious roles alongside Christian Bale in The Fighter and comedic roles alongside a talking teddy bear in Ted. Despite getting himself in trouble by running his mouth and drinking too much on chat shows, Wahlberg’s career appears to be flourishing as he is currently starring alongside Denzel Washington in his new action flick 2 Guns.
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