Dolph Lundgren on facing his past

Lundgren gives “The Expendables 2” a thumbs up.

It’s no secret that ’80s action film star Dolph Lundgren also has a degree in chemical engineering and gave up a Fulbright Scholarship to MIT to become a bodyguard for Grace Jones and eventually an actor. By complete coincidence, in “The Expendables 2,” we learn that his mercenary character, Gunnar, gave up studying chemical engineering at MIT to become a bouncer at a club and shack up with an exotic girlfriend. How convenient.


Whose idea was it to make your character’s backstory your own backstory?

That was [Sylvester] Stallone. I had reservations about the original script on the second [movie]. My character had been so fun to play in the first one. That was the reason I did the movie, and it felt like everyone seemed happy with it. Then in the second one, my character was just like a regular guy in the back with the rest of them, like, “Hey, can I throw a grenade? Can I kill someone, please?” And I didn’t like that. I didn’t want to make the picture — actually, I did turn it down. So then Stallone kind of came to me and said, “I’m going to think of something,” and he came up with a couple of ideas. This was one.


Did you have a say in exactly how much his story matches yours?

It was all in there. I was a bouncer, and it had to do with Grace [Jones] — he fell in love with some girl who dances at a disco, which is kind of like Grace and the whole thing, right? Look, Sly made a career out of making his whole life into movies and it worked for him, so I did a little bit for me, I guess, and I guess it worked pretty well.


Was it common for you guys to slip in Stallone impressions on set when he wasn’t around?

Yeah, and the Arnold [Schwarzenegger] one, too. “I’ll be back.” (laughs) I was at Comic-Con with them, and you’re sitting at the panel with Arnold and Stallone, and you just don’t say a word because what are you going to do? These guys are so famous that they’re like almost beyond famous. Anybody can do their voice, everybody knows them in the whole world — in the fricking jungles of Malaysia, even.


When you’re bringing in all these new characters, beefing up the cast, is there a worry that you’re going to get crowded out?

Yes, I think it weighs on you incredibly. Part of the filmmakers’ and the writers’ task is, how do you give 10 co-stars enough screen time for them not to get upset or feel like they’re getting lost — or for the audience to get their dose of Chuck [Norris] or whoever they want to see, Dolph Lundgren or Terry Crews or Stallone — well, Stallone gets a lot of screen time. [Laughs.]


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Train selfie star who got kicked in the…

  A 22-year-old Canadian man who posted a video of himself getting kicked in the head by a train conductor is set to cash in…

National

Call of Duty hoaxer blamed for $100K SWAT…

A heavilly-armed SWAT team and an army of police officers stormed a Long Island home fearing a grisly double homicide – only to find it…

National

Minnie Driver tweets naked celebrity snap to 'shut…

Actress Minnie Driver has responded to bitchy critics who sniped about her bikini body by Tweeting a naked picture of herself. The 44-year-old star of…

National

American middle classes no longer world's richest (guess…

America's middle classes are no longer the richest in the world – having been overtaken in the wealth stakes by their Canadian counterparts. For almost…

The Word

Lupita Nyong'o is People's Most Beautiful

Congratulations to Lupita Nyong'o, officially the most beautiful human on the face of planet Earth (2014 season).

Television

John Turturro tags in for Robert De Niro…

The cast of the courtroom drama miniseries has undergone yet another shift. Following Robert De Niro's exit, the cable network has brought in John Turturro…

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, April 22: 'Glee,' 'Agents…

'Glee' Rachel makes her Broadway debut in "Funny Girl." Remember when she was just a high school drama nerd? FOX, 8PM 'Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'…

The Word

Lindsay Lohan's big, drunk interview

Lindsay Lohan appears to be completely off the wagon now, if Kode magazine's chronicle of her trip to Coachella is any indication. According to the…

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers,…

MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers, Cardinals, Yankees surge. The A's, Braves, Rangers, Giants and Rockies are also in the top 10.

NBA

Breaking down the Sixers top draft options

With the NBA Playoffs now in full force, there’s only one thing on the mind of Sixers fans at the moment -- the 2014 NBA Draft Lottery.

MLB

Metro one-on-one: Q&A with Phillies centerfielder Ben Revere

Charlie Manuel used to say that the Phillies go as Jimmy Rollins goes. Well, Ryne Sandberg might have a new Phillies catalyst, Ben Revere, in his midst.

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins…

2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins men's race

Wellbeing

How to burn off all that Easter candy

Sorry to be a buzzkill, but you can't eat chocolate eggs and Jelly Bellys forever.

Food

Powdered alcohol: 5 things to know about 'Palcohol'

What's the deal with powdered alcohol? Here's what you need to know about Palcohol.

Travel

Travel hacks: 6 tips on living out of…

Lynne Martin shares her travel hacks on living out of just two suitcases.

Wellbeing

Tough Mudder pro gives tips on conquering a…

Learn hacks from head designer Nolan Kombol.