Watch: 18-Year-Old Channing Tatum Gyrating His Way To Stardom in a Neon Thong

If you’ve been living under a rock, we’re breaking it to you gently: Channing Tatum used to be a male stripper. The Magic Mike actor is proud of his stripper past, noting how coping with poverty drove him to find creative ways to earn a living.


“Personally, I like being pushed into corners. Being a stripper exposed me to a lot of people I might never have met, and that has turned out to be a gift. There are lots of characters I feel I can play as a result,” Channing adds in an interview with The New York Times’ T Magazine.

And if you’re wondering what a gyrating 18 year old Channing Tatum looked like during his heyday, check out this video:

The footage was taken from his 1999 performance. The then 18-year-old Tatum was working at a club called “Male Encounter,” for a year after the video was taken. And according to the dance troupe owner, London Steele, women went bonkers over his performance.

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Steele raved, “He was shy at first, but he really knew how to work the stage. The women went crazy for him!”

The Male Encounter has a strict no-nudity policy (sorry ladies) but in the video, we saw a lot of Tatum’s brawny booty in a neon thong. Hey, it was the 90s. Tatum was shortly discovered by a casting agent and was put in Ricky Martin’s “She Bangs” music video.  And a star was born!

Tatum relived his stripper past after filming the blockbuster, Magic Mike in 2012. A sequel, which is directed by Steven Soderbergh, is currently filming in New Orleans.

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