Showin’ us what he’s workin’ with! Even before he played the titular role in stripper classic Magic Mike, Channing Tatum has always been comfortable in his own skin — as proven by a high school photo that recently surfaced online.
In the grainy picture (dated 1998), the future 21 Jump Street star is wearing nothing but a skimpy black speedo and flexing in front of a crowd next to another young man, presumably a fellow competitor. The fresh-faced star, now 35, would have been 17 or 18 when he entered the Tampa Catholic High School bodybuilding competition.
But being so fit doesn’t come easy. The hunky actor has spoken out about the hard work that went into gaining his Magic Mike physique before, especially following his “fat and happy” days of fatherhood (Tatum is father to daughter Everly, 2, with wife Jenna Dewan Tatum).
"I’m like T-minus I-don’t-know-what to being naked all the time,” he told Esquire late last year, citing a strict diet of chicken breasts and little else. “This is really fine. …It’s what I’m doing. I would like a beer. I would like to have some crab. I love eating. But this is what I’m doing right now.”
Earlier this year, Tatum opened up to Ellen DeGeneres about the perils of being completely clean-shaven before shooting Magic Mike XXL, the sequel to the 2012 hit, out July 1.
“I waxed last time, and I promised myself I was not gonna do it again,” he told the talk show host in February. “And then Matt Bomer goes, ‘No, no, you just didn’t have the right lady. She just wasn’t doing it right.’ And then I went again, and it sucked just as bad."
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