Born in Brooklyn, New York, on November 1, 1951, Lou Ferrigno began bodybuilding while he was a teenager in order to build self-esteem. At the age of two, Ferrigno lost about 80 percent of his hearing due to an ear infection, and as he matured, bodybuilding became a way for Ferrigno to compensate for his loss. He did very well, for in 1970 he won the title Mr. Teenage America and went on to become Mr. America in 1973. In addition, he won the Mr. Universe competition in 1973 and 1974. His 6'5" frame and 275-pound weight undoubtedly helped him win the title.

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You'll find more photos like these on the Lou Ferrigno Gallery page

Ferrigno spent some time toiling in the Canadian football league before becoming an actor. His first big break came with the release of the legendary film Pumping Iron (1977; with Arnold Schwarzenegger), which documented the 1975 Mr. Olympia and Mr. Universe contests. His first acting role came during the same year, when he was cast in the CBS science fiction TV movie The Incredible Hulk (1977; with Bill Bixby and Susan Sullivan). After two more made-for-TV films based on the character, The Incredible Hulk went to series in the fall of 1978. Ferrigno costarred with Bill Bixby in recreating the comic book superhero as David Banner's (Bill Bixby) alter-ego. The smash-hit show was very popular among children and teenagers of the day.

After The Incredible Hulk was canceled in 1982, Lou Ferrigno headed to Italy to lens Hercules (1983; with Brad Harris and Sybil Danning) in an attempt to revive the peplum genre. While fans enjoyed Ferrigno's portrayal of Hercules, some critics didn't. When the nominations for the Fourth Annual Razzie Awards announced in 1983, Ferrigno's Hercules was nominated for five of the eleven categories, including worst picture, worst actor (Ferrigno), and worst actress (Sybil Danning). Nevertheless, the movie proved to be popular enough to spawn a sequel, Hercules II. And today, nearly thirty years after Ferrigno's Hercules, the film has achieved cult status.

the films of lou ferrigno

The Incredible Hulk (1978-1982 CBS TV Series)

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Ferrigno as the Incredible Hulk

Trauma Center (1983 ABC TV Series)

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As John Six on the short-lived 1983 ABC series Trauma Center

Hercules (1983)

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Lou Ferrigno starred in two Italian-made (but shot in English) Hercules films: Hercules and Hercules II. LEFT: Ferrigno is pictured with Sybil Danning and Brad Harris in this promotional photo from Hercules. CENTER and RIGHT: Ferrigno as Hercules

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Promotional photos and scenes from Ferrigno's Hercules films

The Fall Guy (1981-1986 ABC TV Series)

Lou Ferrigno, Lee Majors, and Bruce Jenner

From the ABC series The Fall Guy in a 1984 episode titled The Winner. Also pictured are Lee Majors and Bruce Jenner

Hercules II (1985)

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More photos from Hercules

Sinbad of the Seven Seas (1989)

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From Sinbad of the Seven Seas

Cage (1989)

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From the action flick Cage. LEFT: Ferrigno as Billy Thomas. RIGHT: With Reb Brown

lou ferrigno today

Since his 1977 acting debut, Lou Ferrigno has continued working in films and television. In addition to being an actor and highly sought trainer, Ferrigno is also a Los Angeles County Reserve Deputy Sheriff. He has been married to wife Carla for over 30 years, and the couple has three children. He made headlines in June 2009 as Michael Jackson's trainer, when Jackson died. Ferringo asserted that Jackson's huge debt contributed to his decline. And in February 2012, Ferrigno was a contestant on NBC's reality series Celebrity Apprentice.

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Avengers Grimm (2015) with Casper Van Dien
The Scorpion King 4: Quest for Power (2015) with Barry Bostwick, Rutger Hauer, and Michael Biehn
Moms' Night Out (2014) with Sean Astin, Patricia Heaton, and Trace Adkins
Soupernatural (2010) with Kathy Garver, Dee Wallace, Pamela Sue Martin, Butch Patrick, Pat Priest, Mark Goddard, Paul Petersen, and Ronnie Schell
The Hulk (2003) with Eric Bana, Sam Elliot, and Nick Nolte
From Heaven to Hell (2002) with Burt Ward and Adam West
Ping! (2000) with Clint Howard, Shirley Jones, and Judge Reinhold
The Godson (1998) with Rodney Dangerfield
The Misery Brothers (1995) with "Rowdy" Roddy Piper
Cage II (1994) with Reb Brown
Frogtown II (1993) with Don Stroud
And God Spoke (1993)
The Naked Truth (1992) with Yvonne De Carlo, Herb Edelman, Billy Barty, Alex Cord, Erik Estrada, Zsa Zsa Gabor, and Dick Gautier
Extralarge: Jo-Jo (1991) with Philip Michael Thomas and Andrew Stevens
Hangfire (1991) with Lyle Alzado, Peter Lupus, and Fred Schneider
The Death of the Incredible Hulk (1990) with Bill Bixby
Liberty & Bash (1990) with Miles O'Keeffe
The Trial of the Incredible Hulk (1989) with Bill Bixby
All's Fair (1989) with George Segal
Cage (1989) with Reb Brown
Sinbad of the Seven Seas (1989)
The Incredible Hulk Returns (1988) with Bill Bixby
Desert Warrior (1988)
Hercules II (1985) with Raf Baldassarre
Hercules (1983) with Sybil Danning and Brad Harris
The Seven Magnificent Gladiators (1983) with Sybil Danning, Brad Harris, and Dan Vadis
Bride of the Incredible Hulk (1979) with Bill Bixby and Mariette Hartley
The Return of the Incredible Hulk (1977) with Bill Bixby, William Daniels, and Gerald McRaney
The Incredible Hulk (1977) with Bill Bixby, Susan Sullivan, and Charlie Siebert
Pumping Iron (1977) with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Serge Nubret, Roger Callard, Joe Weider, Mike Katz, and Ken Waller

The King of Queens, 1998-2007 CBS television series. Ferrigno portrayed himself from 2000 to 2007
The Incredible Hulk, 1996-1997 UPN animated television series
Trauma Center, 1983 ABC television series. Ferrigno portrayed John Six
The Incredible Hulk, 1978-1982 CBS television series. Ferrigno portrayed the title character

Chuck, episode Chuck Versus the Suitcase, originally aired September 27, 2010
Reno 911!, episode Department Investigation: Part 2, originally aired September 22, 2004
My Wife and Kids, episode Illegal Smile, originally aired February 18, 2004
Black Scorpion, episode Virtual Vice, originally aired April 14, 2001
Conan, episode The Three Virgins, originally aired November 7, 1997
Night Court, episode Battling Bailiff, originally aired February 7, 1985
The Fall Guy, episode The Winner, originally aired December 19, 1984
The New Mike Hammer, episode Catfight, originally aired October 20, 1984
Matt Houston, episode Blood Ties, originally aired March 2, 1984
The Fall Guy, episode Trauma, originally aired September 28, 1983
The Fall Guy, episode License to Kill: Part 1, originally aired January 13, 1982
Billy, episode Fathers and Sons, originally aired March 31, 1979

lou ferrigno links

Lou Ferrigno: Official Site
This is the official Lou Ferrigno site; visit it to find information, photos, a complete filmography, and more regarding Lou Ferrigno. Books and photographs are available through the site, or arrange with the Hulk himself for a personal fitness consultation.

Lou Ferrigno: The Ultimate Hercules
If you're a Lou Ferrigno fan, Boris Bugaev's site is the last word for information, lots of photos, and anything else you'd like to know about Lou Ferrigno and both of his Hercules movies. It's shockingly complete and detailed, with great photos.

Other Hercules Heroes
Go to the Other Hercules Heroes page, featuring Peter and David Paul, Paul Wynter, Richard Lloyd, and Pierre Brice.
Back to Brian's Drive-In Theater
Click on the logo to go back to Brian's Drive-In Theater
This page premiered August 25, 1998.