For the next couple of months while Ronda Rousey is recovering from a broken thumb and knee surgery, she will turn into the darling of Hollywood as she begins promotion on her debut feature film "The Expendables 3."
While this will serve as her introduction to fans as an actress, Rousey already has filmed roles in two other big budget projects: "The Fast and the Furious 7" and "Entourage."
It was a much different experience for Rousey, who lived in Bulgaria for a month while filming "The Expendables 3" last summer, but thankfully she had a great coach to mentor her along the way.
"Sly really took me under his wing," Rousey told The Hollywood Reporter about working with Sylvester Stallone. "I know it was a gamble to bring me on to the film; he wrote the script, and there were bigger names thrown into the pot. But he believed in me from the beginning even though I felt like I was embarrassing myself on set.
My agent, Brad Slater, kept telling me, ‘You’re going to be the female Rock.’ Then I started to believe it could be a reality.
— Ronda Rousey
"Sly told me: ‘Don’t ever be embarrassed. You’re just playing. Some people take this stuff too seriously. We’re really just playing pretend, and they pay you money for it.’"
Rousey took on an entirely different kind of role for the "Entourage" movie where she actually plays a version of herself in the film opposite Adrian Grenier, Kevin Connolly, Jerry Ferrara, Kevin Dillon and Jeremy Piven.
While the TV series was on HBO, "Entourage" often had stars on the series playing exaggerated versions of themselves. Everyone from Bob Saget to Seth Green appeared on the show, and each was portrayed in a unique way.
But despite playing herself on camera, Rousey says it was an odd experience compared to doing a big-budget action movie.
"I play myself, in that ‘Entourage’ version of reality," Rousey revealed. "It required a lot of walking and talking, which is new to me. Also, it’s a comedy, so you have to be really articulate and have good timing."
In the long run working on films like "The Expendables 3" and "Entourage" will work towards Rousey’s goal of becoming a featured star in movies and not just in supporting roles. Warner Bros. already attached Rousey as the lead actress in a feature film version of the book The Athena Project, and recently hired a writer to pen the script.
It seemingly won’t be long before Rousey is at the head of the line for more major roles, just like a famous friend who made the transition from professional wrestling to becoming the highest grossing actor in all of Hollywood. It helps that they share the same agent.
"I never thought that being an action movie star was in the cards for me. My agent, Brad Slater, kept telling me, ‘You’re going to be the female Rock.’ Then I started to believe it could be a reality. I don’t half-ass anything. If I’m going to do something, I’m going to do it to be the best in the world at it," Rousey said. "A lot of actresses appear in action movies, but there aren’t any female action stars. I love Angelina Jolie, but … it’s about believability for me. Milla Jovovich is one of my favorite actresses — ‘The Fifth Element’ really opened my eyes, and the ‘Resident Evil’ franchise was amazing.
"So definitely a mix of Milla Jovovich and The Rock is what I’m going for. People love chick fights. They love tough, empowered women. And there is a demand. People just don’t know it."