The Incredible Hulk shook up a Manchester gym on Friday as convention For the Love of Sci-Fi got underway near Trafford Park.
New York native Lou Ferrigno is renowned for playing the part of the Incredible Hulk in the classic 1970s TV show, while he also took part in the bodybuilding documentary Pumping Iron alongside other sculpted legends such as Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Lou trained with fans at the Bowlers Primal Academy, alongside Star Wars actor Spencer Wilding, to show that even in his 60s he’s still fighting fit.
“I just love being in the gym, and it’s great to meet all these new people here in the UK. Let’s hope they’re inspired to achieve their fitness goals.”
Throughout his bodybuilding career, Lou consecutively won two Mr. Universe titles, one of the highest honours a professional bodybuilder can earn.
He also smashed bodybuilding records by being one of the biggest bodybuilders at his time of competing by weighing in at 268 lbs(121.5kg) at 6ft 5in, notoriously having larger biceps than his Mr. Olympia rival, Schwarzenegger.
Packing for Manchester England! I travel almost every weekend, and though it can be exhausting, I love my fans and I’m excited about the Comic Con this weekend! https://t.co/8Qcsatpu1B pic.twitter.com/nPucK1D08K
— Lou Ferrigno (@LouFerrigno) November 29, 2018
Bodybuilding fan Jonathan O’Connor,31, who’d always dreamed of meeting Lou, said: “I used to watch Pumping Iron all the time because it always helped to inspire me when I was doing my own training.
“When it came to Arnie versus Lou in the film, I always wanted Lou to win! He still should have won in my eyes and it was a real privilege to meet him.”
Wilding took the opportunity to go toe-to-toe with Lou in the boxing ring, having a brief sparring session that left fans in awe of both the esteemed actors’ physiques.
Spencer most recently donned the helmet of Darth Vader in 2016’s Rogue One – where he carried on the legacy of Sebastian Shaw who wore the helmet in Return of the Jedi.
He has also starred in Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter and Guardians of the Galaxy.
Spencer is a former kick boxer and boxer and is no amateur when it comes to coaching people on how to fight properly in the ring.
Lewis Gardner, 22, got the opportunity to spar in the ring with Spencer.
He said: “Spencer really got it into the session and gave me some great advice. To have him and Lou here in the gym was just mind-blowing.”
It wasn’t just the fans whose fighting stamina were put to the test by Spencer, but also the journalists who attended the session.
I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to have a sparring session with Spencer who, throughout the few minutes he could spare, gave me great boxing advice and really put my stamina to the test.
As a huge Star Wars nerd and fitness fanatic, I was honoured to spend the day with Lou and Spencer and I encourage every fan attending the convention to get a photo-op with them as they couldn’t be more friendly and welcoming.
The convention itself was also attended by Gaten Materazzo and Caleb McLaughlin from the Netflix smash hit show Stranger Things and Henry Thomas, from The Haunting of Hill House.
The convention’s organiser Andy Kleek, who’s flying in Hollywood stars such as Predator’s Jesse Ventura and Rocky’s Carl Weathers, said: “It’s an honour and privilege to have him [Lou] in the UK. Our gym equipment didn’t know what had hit it!”
Fun Fact of the Week!
— FLSci-Fi (@ForLoveofSCI_FI) December 1, 2018
The event runs until Sunday afternoon at Bowlers Exhibition Centre, Longbridge Road, Stretford, M17 1EH. Tickets can be bought at http://fortheloveofsci-fi.com/tickets.