Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Raye Hollitt, Actress and Bodybuilding Champion (1964 - )

I'd like to give a HUGE Thank You to Raye Hollitt for generously giving me permission to include photos from her awesome official website ( in our blog.

Everyone is entitled to be a little bit envious of Raye Hollitt. She's gorgeous, she's a champion bodybuilder, she was an original American Gladiator, and she continues a successful acting career in Hollywood that began 20 years ago. What's even more incredible is that Raye Hollitt is a native of the Wilkes-Barre area.

Raye Hollitt was born in Wilkes-Barre on April 17, 1964. She grew up in the Harvey's Lake area of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

In 1982, at the age of 18, Hollitt moved to Los Angeles, where she became a competitive weighlifter and bodybuilder, competing in and winning numerous bodybuilding titles in Los Angeles, California and Reno, Nevada. Among her titles are 1988 Ms. Los Angeles Weightlifting and the 1989 Women's Extravaganza Strength title winner. She has also appeared on the cover of 14 national bodybuilding magazines throughout her career.

In 1987, Hollitt began her acting career in the action film Penitentiary III, playing a female boxer.

Hollitt gained worldwide recognition for her role as Lonnie Jones, a bodybuilder with a lust for womanizer John Ritter in Blake Edwards' 1989 comedy Skin Deep. Another interesting note: out of a cast of nine women who play girlfriends and ex-girlfriends of hard drinking, womanizing writer Zach Hutton (John Ritter), Hollitt was the only cast member besides Ritter featured in the trailer for the film's release. In the film's most famous scene, Zach strips and crawls into bed, waiting anxiously for his date Lonnie Jones to emerge from the bathroom. As Lonnie emerges, she states that she has worked 5 years to develop her body, "but for one night, it's...all...yours." Then Lonnie proceeds to flex and pose her incredible physique, asking Zach, "How do you feel about THAT?" Zach's response: "Like Mrs. Arnold Schwarzenegger."

Following Hollitt's success in Skin Deep, she continued to act in several Hollywood films (including 1991's The Last Hour, 1993's Hot Shots: Part Deux, and 1994's Cyborg III) and guest-starring on several popular television shows (from JAG to Baywatch to Manhunt--and even an episode of Muppets Tonight).

In 1989, Hollitt gained an extra massive fan following as Zap in the hugely successful show American Gladiators, in which professional athletes competed with average people in stamina-testing challenges such as Power Ball, Assault, The Wall and Hang Tough. Hollitt starred in the series from 1989 through 1994 and competed in almost 100 episodes of American Gladiators. The show remains a mainstay in popular culture and was even recently revived this past year on NBC.

During her time with American Galdiators, Hollitt became the official spokesperson for Ye Olde Clock & Gift Shoppe in Dallas, PA, and her commercials continue to air on local television stations to this day.

Hollitt contines to act in Hollywood, and she will next been seen in Nilanjan Neil Lahiri's upcoming drama The Ode.

Hollitt also continues her successful bodybuilding career in Los Angeles. She also operates her official website, and her MySpace page.

Skin Deep is available to borrow on DVD from the Lackawanna County Library System. To place a hold, click here.

Thank you again to the amazing Raye Hollitt for letting me use photos from her official website for this reference.

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