If you ever want a 6′ 5″, musclebound, broad-shouldered, shaved-head actor to play a terrifying bodyguard, a soldier of fortune or a fearsome gangster, then Tommy “Tiny” Lister Jr. is the man you want. This African-American basketball player, turned actor, first popped up in minor roles such as a prison guard in Runaway Train (1985), as Andy Garcia‘s bodyguard in 8 Million Ways to Die (1986) and Powers Boothe‘s bodyguard in Extreme Prejudice (1987). “Tiny” Lister also had a stint in both the WWE (Formerly WWF) & WCW professional wrestling circuits in the late 1980s appearing under the name “Zeus” and “ZGangsta”. His wrestling exploits can be seen on Summerslam (1989), Survivor Series (1989) and WWF Superstars (1984). His other body of works include: as the Federated Territories President in the science fiction epic The Fifth Element (1997), the cult comedy Friday (1995) and its sequel, Next Friday (2000).
Tiny Lister has worked with some of the greatest directors (Quentin Tarantino, Luc Besson, John Frankenheimer), many of our most noted actors (Marlon Brando, Samuel L. Jackson, Johnny Depp, Peter O’Toole) and a good share of the top talent in wrestling and rap (Hulk Hogan, 50 Cent and Tupac Shakur, respectively) – but it is Tiny’s devotion to ministry and public speaking that makes the biggest impression. Along with his wife Felicia, Tiny now ministers across the country, reaching out to troubled youth.