Actor Spotlight: Channing Tatum

By: Desiree Williams

Channing Tatum was born in Alabama on April 26th, 1980. Unlike other celebrities, he was not involved in theatre in school and did not move to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career at a young age. Instead, he played football at Tampa Catholic High School and wished to obtain an athletic scholarship to play in college. After graduating in 1998, he attended Glenville State College in West Virginia on an athletic scholarship, but didn’t finish his studies. After jobs as a model, stripper, and construction worker, his first job in the entertainment industry was in Ricky Martin’s “She Bangs” music video as a dancer.

        Tatum continued modeling and appeared in a few films with small roles, such as Coach Carter and War of the Worlds. In 2006, he acquired two breakthrough roles: one as Tyler Gage in Step Up, where he co-starred with his future wife, Jenna Dewan Tatum, and as Duke in She’s the Man.  After the success of both films, Tatum was cast in two bigger projects in 2009, Public Enemy and G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, which highlighted his versatility as an actor. He continued adding projects to his resume, never content in one genre. He starred in The Vow (a romance), White House Down (an action packed thriller), and 21 Jump Street (a comedy) within two years. He revived his dancing with Magic Mike in 2012, where he brought the story of a stripper to the big screen. Tatum continues to receive praise for his acting diversity.

This year, Tatum reprised his role as Jenko in 22 Jump Street and voiced in the animated film, The Lego Movie. Most recently, he portrayed Mark Schultz in Foxcatcher. Released on November 14th, this film tells the true story of Mark Schultz, an Olympic wrestler. Early in 2015, Tatum will also star in Jupiter Ascending alongside Mila Kunis.