Now that the iconic, female-led Ocean’s 8 movie has hit theaters, it reminded us of how many musicians ultimately turn to acting. You may be surprised, but several musicians decide to switch it up a bit by appearing on-screen. When you see the Ocean’s movie, for example, you may see some familiar faces in the music world (SPOILER ALERT: It’s Rihanna), but she’s definitely not the only musician who’s dabbled in acting. Ready to find out which artists took a short break from music to see if they had any acting chops? Take a look:
Rihanna is true triple-threat: she sings, she dances, and she also acts! In honor of her role in the new movie Ocean’s 8, which was released this past Friday, let’s take a look at Rihanna and 6 other musicians who’ve made a second career in acting.
Rihanna became a household name with her debut song “Pon de Replay” back in 2005 and has been releasing hit after hit ever since. She began her acting career with a guest role in Bring It On: All or Nothing in 2006. Since then, she’s been in movies such as Battleship (2012), Annie (2014), Home (2015), and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017), as well as on TV in Bates Motel in 2017.
Ice Cube was a founding member of the rap group NWA in 1986 and just a few years later made his debut on the silver screen. Over the last three decades, he’s been in films such as Boyz n the Hood (1991), the Barbershop series, the Are We There Yet? series (also including its TV series), 22 Jump Street (2014), and Straight Outta Compton (2015).
Mark Wahlberg may be known now mainly for his acting, but he began as a musician! He was part of the boy band New Kids on the Block (with his brother Donnie Wahlberg) for only a few months before quitting. He made name for himself as the lead in the hip-hop group Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch and their massive 1991 hit “Good Vibrations.” In 1993, Wahlberg starred in his first movie The Substitute. He’s gone on to act in dozens of movies including Boogie Nights (1997), The Italian Job (2003), I Heart Huckabees (2004), The Departed (2006), The Lovely Bones (2009), The Other Guys (2010), Ted (2012), Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014), Transformers: The Last Knight (2017), and many more.
Queen Latifah began her entertainment career as a rapper. She released her first album All Hail The Queen in 1989 and four years later, got the lead role on the TV show Living Single. Then, she starred on her own talk show The Queen Latifah Show from 1999-2001 and again in 2013. She’s also starred in movies such as House Party 2 (1991), Juice (1992), The Bone Collector (1999), Chicago (2002), Bringing Down The House (2003), Beauty Shop (2005), Hairspray (2007), The Perfect Holiday (2007), and Joyful Noise (2012).
Justin Timberlake is a true triple-threat. We all know him as a member of NSYNC and as a solo artist. He’s an incredible dancer. And he also decided to branch out and take up acting! Some of his roles include Edison (2005), Alpha Dog (2006), Shrek The Third (2007), The Social Network (2010), Friends with Benefits (2011), and Trolls (2016).
Harry Connick Jr.
Harry Connick Jr. began working in the movie business in 1989 when he provided songs for the When Harry Met Sally… soundtrack. In 1990, he made his acting debut in Memphis Belle. Since then, he’s been in countless movies, TV shows, and has even been on Broadway! Some of his movie roles include Bug (2005) and New In Town (2009). Some of his TV roles include South Pacific (2001), Will & Grace (2002-2006, 2017), Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (2012), and his talk show Harry (2016-2018). He also starred in “The Pajama Game” on Broadway in 2006.
Rapper Ludacris has acted in many of the The Fast and the Furious movies including 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003), Fast Five (2011), Fast & Furious 6 (2013), Furious 7 (2015), and The Fate of the Furious (2017). He’s also starred in the movies Crash (2004) and Hustle & Flow (2005).
Featured Image: Instagram (@badgalriri)