Steve Reeves dies of complications from lymphoma in Escondido, California, 2000. "I only did two Hercules films,” the actor and bodybuilder once remarked about his most famous role, “but everyone seems to think I did ten." He made a total of 19 films; none were exactly classics, nor were his acting chops any threat to Marlon Brando, or even Sonny Tufts. But film is, of course, a visual medium, and on that front, he delivered with a handsome face and beautifully muscled physique, often scantily clad. The former Mr. Universe had small parts in Athena (1954) and Jail Bait (1954) before an Italian director named Pietro Francisci discovered him and put him in Hercules (1958). The film was a moneymaker and kicked off a series of cheap sword-and-sandals movies starring Reeves, none of which featured his real speaking voice.