FROM MARTIAL ARTS TO HOLLYWOOD: Get To Know Sizzling Action Star Gina Carano

Gina carano

Gina Carano is going from Mixed Martial Arts star to the big screen in Hollywood.

This coming January, she’ll star alongside Channing Tatum in “Haywire,” Steven Soderbergh’s next film.

Originally trained in Muay Thai, Carano was called the face of MMA because of her success and good looks.

Carano has dabbled in some small films, and was even a regular on American Gladiator, but this will be her biggest appearance yet.

Gina was born in 1982 in Dallas, her father, Glenn Carano was a back-up quarterback for the Cowboys

In high school, Gina played basketball, volleyball, and softball. She says she was always a tomboy growing up, roughhousing with her male cousins

Gina went to UNLV and earned a degree in psychology. While she was at school, she tried to help her sister who was a drug addict

Her sister Casey was always her idol, she told Yahoo! Sports. And the worst moment of Gina's life was when she was 21, and two policemen knocked at her door.

Her sister, who suffered from anorexia and was a drug abuser was missing for six months. Gina expected the policemen to tell her Casey was dead, but instead they said they found her, and Casey began her road to recovery.

Gina first got her start in MMA studying Muay Thai, after her ex-boyfriend begged her to come to the studio he fought with

But at the time, Gina weighed 175 pounds, and one of the instructors told her she needed to lose weight. Gina went into training to get in shape and lose some weight, but she had no idea she'd soon be one of the top fighters in the 140-145 pound class.

After going 12-1-1 in Muay Thai, Gina was invited to her first MMA match in Las Vegas. She won her very first match against Rosi Sexton in just 38 seconds

Because of her beauty and talent, people started calling her the face of MMA. Gina didn't like this.

Gina continued her winning streak until losing her eighth match

After this loss against Cristiane Santos, Gina stayed out of the ring for more than a year. It was announced she would return to fight on June 18, 2011, but she didn't participate for unknown reasons.

There were rumours Carano was pregnant, but Carano was medically cleared for the match, so that probably was not the case.

Gina has been in the public eye outside the ring, too. She starred in the movie Ring Girls, about female Muay Thai fighters, based on a true story, in 2005

She had a big fight scene in Blood and Bone in 2009

She was #16 on Maxim's Hot 100 list in 2009

She also has modelled for Pontiac

She made her first public appearance since missing the June 18th fight this week at Comic Con. She discussed her new movie Haywire with costar Channing Tatum and director Steven Soderbergh

Haywire comes out in January 2012. Here's the trailer:

Now see how this soccer star climbed to the top

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