This weekend Battleship hits theaters and aside from the well-known Hollywood stars in the film, there is one breakout role, played by Colonel Greg Gadson, that moviegoers are sure to talk about.
Gadson is a double amputee who lost his legs to a roadside bomb in Iraq back in 2007. Today he is on the big screen starring as Mike Canales, a legless, wounded Army veteran in Universal’s Battleship. When the creators of the sci-fi action film wanted to include a character who had been wounded at war, Gadson stood out as the perfect person to cast.
NBC News’ Mara Schiavocampo sat down with Gadson in Honolulu, Hawaii and talked about breakout film role.
When asked if he thought he would ever be an action movie star he simply replied, “No.”
Though he served valiantly in Kuwait, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq, Gadson was still surprised to be cast as a hero in Battleship, a big budget movie based on the classic board game.
The role isn’t just a new chapter in his career, but his life.
“I couldn’t stand quitting. I couldn’t stand the silence. I couldn’t stand giving up,” said Gadson.
So he got up, literally.
Gadson became the first soldier in the country to test a new kind of high-powered prosthetic legs. He went back to school and earned both a masters and honorary degree. The war veteran went on to become a honorary co-captain of the New York Giants and his motivational pep talks helped motivate the team to a Super Bowl win in 2007. Today he is still on active duty while making his acting debut in Battleship.
Battleship is now playing in theaters nationwide.