Wrestlers have been invading the movies for years. After all, who better to dole out some scripted, OTT grappling than the men who make it their living? The wrestling industry has everything that Hollywood loves: stars with name recognition, fight scenes, rippling muscles, beautiful women and drama so heightened that it's in danger of leaving orbit.
While the movies they appear in are often stupid stupid dumb stupid, megastars like Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, John Cena and Dave Bautista have all achieved a certain level of Hollywood success, in movies like No Holds Barred, The Expendables, The Marine, and Guardians of the Galaxy respectively. Oh, and you may have heard of an actor on the independent movie circuit called Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson.
When a wrestler is cast in a movie, fans hope to see certain things: one-liners, big people hitting other big people, things falling over, and, most of all, for the wrestler to hit their finishing move. As heinously cheesy as it is, the meta-pleasure that wrestling fans get from seeing The Rock hit a Rock Bottom on the big screen bypasses all sense of logic, taste and respect for storytelling-integrity, and jolts them right in the Hell Yeah! part of their brains.
It's not actually all that common, being a little too on-the-nose and wink-wink for movies taking themselves anything close to seriously, but here's a compilation of some of the most famous examples. (p.s. Big thanks to the good people of the Squared Circle subreddit community for helping to provide some of these)
Lita Hits The Litasault In Dark Angel
It doesn't quite make it onto the list proper, because it's only a TV show, but in Dark Angel, a sc-fi show about Jessica Alba fighting people in a post-apocalyptic Seattle, Amy Dumas, aka Lita, shows up and busts out most of her wrestling repertoire. This naturally includes her Litasault: In an unfortunate turn of events, while filming the season finale, Lita suffered a stinger and a number of cracks in her neck vertebrae when she botched a Lita-canrana, necessitating surgery and being absent from the ring for 17 months.
Christian Gets Hit With The Unprettier In Dark Rising
Dark Rising is a movie about stupid people who try partying with a book of evil spells. Also, Jay 'Christian' Reso is there, because why not. They drunkenly read some spells, conjure some demons, typical 'bro stuff'. Christian gets bitten by a demon spawn and becomes one himself, which he hams up wonderfully (see picture above). He is eventually finished off by a lady fighter hitting him with his own finishing move, the Unprettier, which is highly undignified. The fact that Christian didn't hit the move, but rather suffered it himself, forces it into an honourable mention.