Channing Tatum on his stripper past: “I’m not ashamed of it, I don’t regret it”

Channing Tatum covers the April GQ UK Style issue, and I absolutely hate this photo shoot. The cover looks like a 1980s Teen Beat, and the shoot makes Tatum look like a meathead. Or, meathead-ier than usual. As for the interview, Channing talks about his past as a stripper, as he often does in interviews (people are curious). I often wonder if Channing Tatum’s career path was gender reversed, whether Girl Channing would have had the kind of wild success that Boy Channing has had. What if a girl had gone from being a stripper in Tampa to teen dance movies to super-stardom? Would it even have played out like that? Or would “Tampa stripper” be the end of the road for an aspiring young actress? It is my hope that in the gender-reversed situation, the girl would be accepted in Hollywood as long as she wore her stripper past with some humor and honesty, like Channing does.

Channing Tatum has come a long way from his days as male stripper Chan Crawford. The 31-year-old star was the epitome of style as he posed for a new photo shoot and revealed that he isn’t ashamed of his not-so-pristine past.

He says: ‘I had wanted to tell people. I’m not ashamed of it. I don’t regret one thing. I’m not a person who hides s**t. I was young and dumb and stupid and wanted to make a little money. You can work ten hours a day for minimum wage – that’s the opportunities for kids without a college education. Get some s**t job that you’re really going to have to bust your hump for. Or you can try something else a little crazy.’

Tatum said that he became an exotic male dancer at the age of 19, and chalks the experience up to wanting more excitement in his life.

He admits that he now feels far more confident playing the Hollywood movie star game.

He says: ‘In the beginning I felt like I definitely did not fit in. Now I feel like I am getting hipper to the game. I fought it really hard at the beginning. It’s hard on your emotional self. Failures, even reading something someone wrote about you… God, I’m just trying so hard here.’

[From The Mail]

At the end of the day, Channing wins. He used his experience as a stripper to come up with an idea about a screenplay about male strippers, and now that movie has been directed by Steven Soderbergh. Plus, Channing wins because he makes surprisingly good career choices for a dude who says “’I was young and dumb and stupid.” Dumb AND stupid? Oh, Chan.

GQ UK photos courtesy of The Mail.

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37 Responses to “Channing Tatum on his stripper past: “I’m not ashamed of it, I don’t regret it””

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  1. NancyMan says:

    I only regret that I didn’t get to see him do it!

  2. nikzilla37 says:

    How about some photos of him stripping?

  3. lizzi says:

    I would go see Magic Mike, but I think i’m going to need the privacy of my own home so I’ll wait for the DVD ;)

  4. Maripily says:

    He’s so hot. I wish I could have seen stripper Chan too!

  5. cmc says:

    He’s hot and obviously works his ass off. I’m a fan.

  6. carrie says:

    bad actor in my opinion but i like he works hard
    he’s like Mark Wahlberg even 20 years after ,the journalists again talks to him about NKOB and rap

  7. ShanKat says:

    I think he gets away with the cheekiness of teen idol-style shoots like this because he seems to have a healthy sense of humor…in general, and about himself.

    Those outfits really are a hot mess. Who is styling GQ and not employing a belt? I need CT’s waistline to rep his dong-al area with respect and appropriate accessorization.

    Not that I was looking.

  8. Lis says:

    I reallyreallyreally like this guy.

    No, he’s not the most naturally talented actor, but he’s willing to hustle and work like a dog. I love it when someone claws their way up – it’s why I can’t entirely hate on Madonna.

    Also, he seemed cool in this interview:

  9. bondbabe says:

    In my book, there is certainly no reason to be ashamed or have regret. I would be happy to ogle him all day (and night)!!

  10. katie says:

    Well he’s not the greatest actor, but he seems very charming in interviews – print and television. You can’t help but like him.
    I do hate this photo shoot. It’s halfway between Bye Bye Birdie and a John Hughes movie. The cover is a a pair of BCD glasses short of being SWELL!

  11. Ruth says:

    Of course a girl would never have gotten away with it- the closest you get is Dita von Teese and she is shall we say.. a special case? A girl isnt socially allowed to want to strip just because she “wants some more excitement in her life”

  12. Jane says:

    Wasn’t Diablo Cody a stripper before she wrote Juno? And because she had a sense of humour really it was just another interesting story to tell, and her Oscar win ended up eclipsing everything else. : )

  13. Holden says:

    He might have to go back to it, he no act so good.

  14. Happy21 says:

    I like him. Fell in love when Step Up came out. He can’t really act but he is doing well and I wish him well in his future.

    If he was a she we’d be complaining about how he needed to STFU when it came to discussing his past; that we’ve heard it a million times and doesn’t he/she have anything else to say? No, he wouldn’t be this successful if he were a woman. Double standard all the way.

    As far as Magic Mike goes I am seeing that and I’m going to enjoy it. Its not everyday we get to objectify men!

  15. Nessa says:

    I really like his guy. I think he is adorable AND hot. I’d hit that.

  16. Rux says:

    I really like this kid. When Step It Up came out I so put the “pretty boy meathead gone in a few years” mantra on him. I have been happily surprised by Chan, He had a few movies that were not mainstream one in which he kind of starred in with RDJ and he did some really great serious acting. It was a drama about growing up in Queens. Since Haywire, previews for 21 Jumpstreet and his latest interviews, I have really begun to like this guy. Not even in a lusty way just a kind of I would like him to be a big brother type person. I do not sense any malice or falseness to him; quite refreshing.

  17. Jo 'Mama' Besser says:

    What a lame video shoot. Is he promoting some looming fashion trend known as Hulk Meets Garanimals Chic? Are of the clothes in baby sizes?

    Clearly he’s not ashamed, since it’s all he ever talks about. Not sure why, he was so compelling in… but, I’m not even mad a the dude, it’s not as though he’s saying ‘I don’t like talking about it. Why do you have to focus on the lap dance I’m giving you, I’m an Ac-tor. Lighting, cam-e-ra, can we emphasize my bulge, my ac-ting bulge?

    Diablo Cody stripped and she’s doing pretty well. I’m not about to say that things are equal between the sexes, but this quest for martyrdom crosses into vanity, plants a pole in it and…

  18. Sarah says:

    The “dumb” label he gets bothers me bc I can’t stand the Southerners are dumb stereotype. Unfortunately, if he were girl Channing, people wouldn’t be so gracious about her stripper past.

  19. Isa says:

    I can’t help it, I love him.

  20. original sandy says:

    i watched him on snl, i like him too.

  21. Jenna says:

    Cut him some slack for the young, dumb AND stupid comment. Normally, that would be redundant – but during a ‘special’ time in a persons life, often somewhere in the 17-22 range… you really DO became dumb AND stupid. Often toss moronic onto it as well. It’s the kind of behavior that it only requires getting a few years away from to let you look back, and without shame (but plenty of embarrassment) shake your head, cringe just a little bit at the memories, and remember just how fraking dumb, stupid, and a big ol’ whopping heaping helping of naive you were back then.

    Honestly, I’m rather impressed he can manage that kind of self-awareness and refuses to do the typical Hollyweird trick of rewriting his past to the point he begins to believe it himself. Makes him a much more likable and believable actor.

  22. Geo says:

    Amy Adams was a Hooters waitress…

  23. Llama says:

    He’s grown on me a lot lately – love guys who don’t take themselves too seriously!

    And he generally seems like somebody who’s very comfortable with himself – it’s nice seeing how the world is responding positively to that attitude.

  24. Snowpea says:

    Um, I can’t help staring at his crotch area – he looks like he’s hung like a camel! Yum!

  25. skyla says:

    For all those ladies who wanted to see Channing Tatum back in his stripper days.

  26. alex says:

    God damn…what a saint. It was charity baby, and he was sharing the gifts God gave him.

  27. Briamatia says:

    His neck is a weee bit too large for my taste, but everything below-HOT DAMN, thank you madame