Blog/Kevin Sorbo: Movies and TV shows
Kevin Sorbo: Movies and TV shows
5 min read

Kevin Sorbo: Movies and TV shows

5 min read
kevin-sorbo-movies-and-tv-shows
Eloise BrattSep 22, 2021

Kevin Sorbo is best known for playing the starring role in 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys', but what else has he been in? Thrillz has the story.

Best known roles

Kevin Sorbo has had success on both the big and small screens. He starred in two television series, one where he played Hercules in the famous 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys' and as Captain Dylan Hunt in 'Andromeda'. Kevin Sorbo is also known for acting in the Christian drama films 'God's Not Dead' and 'Let There Be Light'.

Kevin Sorbo as Hercules
Kevin Sorbo as Hercules

This ain't Jim Beam

During the mid-1980s, Kevin Sorbo mainly focused on television commercials whilst travelling around Europe and Australia. By the early 1990s, he had worked on over 150 commercials.

One particularly notorious commercial was for Jim Beam bourbon whiskey, where Kevin Sorbo was known for his repeated catchphrase "This ain't Jim Beam". During this time he would occasionally get casted for acting roles. His first appearance was in 1986 during an episode of the soap opera 'Santa Barbara'.

Kevin Sorbo starred in a Jim Beam whiskey commercial where he coined the catchphrase "This ain't Jim Beam".
Kevin Sorbo starred in a Jim Beam whiskey commercial where he coined the catchphrase "This ain't Jim Beam".

After his stint in 'Santa Barbara', Kevin Sorbo made a number of guest appearances in television series such as '1st & Ten', 'Murder She Wrote' and 'The Commish'.

Big break or big mistake?

Later, in 1992, Kevin starred in an unsuccessful pilot called 'Condition: Critical' which was a medical drama series. The show was sadly not picked up but it did air as a television film on ABC.

Kevin was considered for the role of Superman in 'Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman' but he lost out to Dean Cain. He was also a possible contender for the role of Fox Mulder in The X Files, which ended up going to David Duchovny instead. It was in 1993 that Kevin had his film debut where he played the supporting role in the movie 'Slaughter of the Innocents.'

Choose from hundreds of celebrities
Discover our Talent
Book a celebrity for a personalised video message in just a few clicks. It makes the perfect gift!
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card
Talent card

A breakthrough for Kevin Sorbo

A year later, in 1994, Kevin got his big break where he was cast as the lead role of Hercules, the Ancient Greek mythical demigod. He was to star in a series of five television films throughout the year, which aired as part of Universal Television's Action Pack.

Kevin starred as Hercules in a series of five television films throughout the year
Kevin starred as Hercules in a series of five television films throughout the year

The first film aired in April and was titled 'Hercules and the Amazon Women', the second film was 'Hercules and the Lost Kingdom', next came 'Hercules and the Circle of Fire' followed by 'Hercules in the Underworld'. The final film was called 'Hercules in the Maze of the Minotaur' and aired in November.

All five films proved to be a huge success and paved the way for the commissioning of the infamous television series 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys' which aired in January 1995 and eventually ran for six seasons.

Kevin Sorbo in 1995 as Hercules
Kevin Sorbo in 1995 as Hercules

This very series is what led to Kevin Sorbo becoming an international success and a star in his own right. 'Hercules: The Legendary Journeys' became one of the highest-rated television shows during this time.

Kevin also directed two episodes of the series during its run and he also co-wrote an episode.

A warrior princess spin-off

Due to the popularity and success of the show, a spin-off series, 'Xena: Warrior Princess' starring Lucy Lawless, was created. Kevin also made two appearances during the spin-off series.

In 1998, a spin-off direct-to-video animated film titled 'Hercules and Xena - The Animated Movie: The Battle for Mount Olympus' was released with both Kevin and Lucy voicing the characters.

Kevin Sorbo made two appearances during the Hercules spin-off series, 'Xena: Warrior Princess', which starred Lucy Lawless
Kevin Sorbo made two appearances during the Hercules spin-off series, 'Xena: Warrior Princess', which starred Lucy Lawless

Hercules gets the chop

Much to the fan's disappointment, 'Hercules' was cancelled midway through filming was underway for Season Six, which only produced eight episodes, the final episode was aired in November 1999. This was due to Kevin choosing to not extend his contract which would see him continue starring in the series for a further three years. He made his final appearance as Hercules on Xena in the Season Five episode which aired in February 2000.

BOOK NOW
Kevin Sorbo
Book a personalised video message from this Hercules star!
Kevin Sorbo

Post Hercules success

Between his years playing Hercules, Kevin also got to play his first leading film role in 'Kull the Conqueror' in 1997. When 'Hercules' finally came to an end, Kevin played the lead role of Captain Dylan Hunt in the sci-fi drama series 'Andromeda' from 2000 to 2005. In 2006, he played a recurring role on the last season of 'The O.C' and also guest-starred in the hit sitcom 'Two and a Half Men'.

From 2007 onwards Kevin Sorbo went on to star in many more movies, including a prominent role in the film 'Soul Surfer' in 2011. His long list of creditable roles has helped Kevin make his mark in Hollywood and aided in moulding him into the great actor he is today.

More recently, Kevin starred in the hit movie 'Soul Surfer' (Image credit: unknown)
More recently, Kevin starred in the hit movie 'Soul Surfer' (Image credit: unknown)

Personal Life

On January 5, 1998, Kevin married actress Sam Jenkins (now Sam Sorbo). The pair met a year prior on the set of 'Hercules' Season 3, in which Sam had a minor recurring role. Together they have three children: Braeden Cooper Sorbo (born in 2001), Shane Haaken Sorbo (born in 2004) and Octavia Flynn Sorbo (born in 2005).

In 1998 Kevin married actress Sam Jenkins after the pair met on the set of 'Hercules' (Image credit: Mike Coppola/Getty Images)
In 1998 Kevin married actress Sam Jenkins after the pair met on the set of 'Hercules' (Image credit: Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Kevin Sorbo is also the spokesperson and chair of A World Fit for Kids! (AWFFK!), which is a non-profit organisation that teaches teenagers to become mentors to younger children.

In 2001, Kevin was featured in the on the celebrity episode of 'Who Wants to Be a Millionaire' where he took home $32,000 for his charity, A World Fit For Kids!.

Kevin appeared on the celebrity version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire where he won $32,000 for his charity, A World Fit For Kids!
Kevin appeared on the celebrity version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire where he won $32,000 for his charity, A World Fit For Kids!

Health

While on a publicity tour for 'Kull the Conqueror' in 1997, which also happened to be during the fourth and fifth seasons of 'Hercules', Kevin Sorbo had an aneurysm in his shoulder which resulted in the star having four strokes. For the next few years, Kevin kept his condition secret from the public while he recovered. In his 2011 autobiography 'True Strength', Kevin revealed details of his injury and the extent of how his wife Sam helped him through recovery.

The Sorbo family (from left to right): Braeden, Shane, Kevin, Octavia, and Sam (Image credit: unknown)
The Sorbo family (from left to right): Braeden, Shane, Kevin, Octavia, and Sam (Image credit: unknown)

While you're here

Why not book a personalised video message from the Hercules star himself, Kevin Sorbo! It makes the perfect gift to a loved one, or to yourself!

Eloise Bratt
Eloise BrattContent Creator
Get 10% OFF your first purchaseSign up for email updates and offers