Movie Stars’ Military Service

Below is a list of famous movie stars who weren’t just acting when they portrayed men in uniform...they were/are also veterans. We offer them a sincere thank you for their service.

Movie stars who have served our country
and also starred in some of the most famous war movies of all time.

Movie Star Branch of the Service Rank Active Service Military Role(s)
Humphrey Bogart
Humphrey Bogart
U.S. Navy
Navy emblem
Sailor World War I, 1918-1921
  • Sgt. Joe Gunn in Sahara (1943)
  • Lt. Joe Rossi in Action in the North Atlantic (1943)
  • Lieutenant Commander Philip Francis Queeg in The Caine Mutiny (1954)
Ernest Borgnine
Ernest Borgnine
U.S. Navy
Navy emblem
Gunner’s mate, 1st class 1935-1941, re-enlisted 1941-1945
  • Staff Sergeant James R. “Fatso” Judson in From Here to Eternity (1953)
  • Lieutenant/Lieutenant Commander Archer “Archie” Sloan in Torpedo Run (1958)
  • Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale in McHale’s Navy (1962-1966)
  • Major General Worden in The Dirty Dozen (1967)
Kirk Douglas
Kirk Douglas
U.S. Navy
Navy emblem
Lieutenant World War II, 1942–1944
  • Colonel Dax in Paths of Glory (1957)
  • Colonel Jiggs Casey in Seven Days in May (1964)
  • Commander Paul Eddington in In Harm’s Way (1965)
Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
U.S. Army
Army emblem
Swimming Instructor 1950-?
  • Lt. Morris Schaffer in Where Eagles Dare (1968)
  • Private Kelly in Kelly’s Heroes (1970)
  • Gunnery Sgt. Thomas “Gunny” Highway in Heartbreak Ridge (1986)
Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda
U.S. Navy
Navy emblem
Quartermaster World War II, 1942–1946
  • Lt. JG Douglas A. “Doug” Roberts in Mister Roberts (1955)
  • Brig. Gen. Theodore Roosevelt Jr. in The Longest Day (1962)
  • Adm. Chester W. Nimitz in In Harm’s Way (1965)
  • Adm. Chester W. Nimitz in Midway (1976)
Dennis Franz
Dennis Franz
U.S. Army
Army emblem
Airborne Division Vietnam, 1968-?
  • Captain Carmine Lorenz in The Package (1989)
Clark Gable
Clark Gable
U.S. Army Air Corps
US Army Air Corps emblem
Major World War II, 1942–44
  • CPO Steve Nelson in Hell Divers (1931)
  • Cmdr. “Rich” Richardson in Run Silent Run Deep (1958)
Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
U.S. Marine Corps
Marines emblem
Corporal 1946-1950
  • Lt. Col. Iceal Hambleton, USAF in Bat*21 (1988)
  • Sgt. Johnny Gallagher in The Package (1989)
  • Captain Frank Ramsey in Crimson Tide (1995)
  • Admiral Leslie McMahon Reigart in Behind Enemy Lines (2001)
James Earl Jones
James Earl Jones
U.S. Army
Army emblem
First Lieutenant 1953-55
  • Sgt. Maj. “Goody” Nelson in Gardens of Stone (1987)
  • Admiral James Greer in Clear and Present Danger (1994)
Harvey Keitel
Harvey Keitel
U.S. Marine Corps
Marines emblem
Private 1956-1959
  • Feraud in The Duellists (1977)
  • CPO Henry Klough in U-571 (2000)
  • Brig. Gen. Warren Black in Fail Safe (2000)
Steve McQueen
Steve McQueen
U.S. Marine Corps
Marines emblem
Private First Class 1947-1950
  • Reese in Hell Is for Heroes (1962)
  • Capt. Virgil Hilts “The Cooler King” in The Great Escape (1963)
  • Machinist’s Mate 1st Class Jake Holman in The Sand Pebbles (1966)
Paul Newman
Paul Newman
U.S. Navy
Navy emblem
Radioman/Gunner World War II, 1943–1946
  • Capt. Edward W. Hall Jr. in The Rack (1956)
  • Capt. Jack Harding in Until They Sail (1957)
  • General Leslie Groves in Fat Man and Little Boy (1989)
Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley
U.S. Army
Army emblem
Sergeant 1958–1960
  • U.S. Army Specialist 5 (SP5) Tulsa McLean in G.I. Blues (1960)
Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan
U.S. Army Reserve, U.S. Army Air Corps
Army emblem
US Army Air Corps emblem
Captain Stateside service during World War II (1942-1945); Army Reserve (1937-1942)
  • Cpl. Johnny Jones in This is the Army (1943)
  • Commander Casey Abbott in Hellcats of the Navy (1957)
George C. Scott
George C. Scott
U.S. Marines
Marines emblem
Sergeant 1945–1949
  • General “Buck” Turgidson in Dr. Strangelove (1964)
  • George S. Patton in Patton (1970)
  • Brigadier General Harlan Bache in Taps (1981)
Jimmy Stewart
Jimmy Stewart
U.S. Army Air Force, U.S. Air Force Reserve
Air Force emblem
US Army Air Corps emblem
Brigadier General World War II, 1941–1968
  • Glenn Miller in The Glenn Miller Story (1954)
  • Lt. Col. Robert “Dutch” Holland in Strategic Air Command (1955)