Sven-Ole Thorsen is known for his frequent appearances in Arnold Schwarzenegger movies, like Conan the Barbarian, as the hammer-wielding Thorgrim; The Running Man, as the ultimately sympathetic bodyguard Sven; and in Predator, where he played a one-second role as a Russian military advisor ('Knock Knock'). Some of his other most memorable characters have varied widely, from the gritty boater wearing security guard La Fours in Mallrats, to the unbeaten fighting legend Tigris of Gaul in Gladiator, and the witty Lt. Michael 'Tank' Ellis, Ground Assault Unit in Captain Power, to the menacing alien villain Secundus in Abraxas, Guardian of the Universe, who is always hunting for the Anti-Life Equation without any success.
Thorsen has been credited in more Arnold Schwarzenegger movies than anyone else. It began with Conan the Barbarian, when Schwarzenegger brought Thorsen and other of his bodybuilder friends (like Franco Columbu) with him to shoot the movie. Later, when Thorsen moved to the United States, he met Schwarzenegger again while he was acting in the movie Commando. Thorsen helped with some of the stuntwork in that movie, and quickly found work in many of the subsequent Schwarzenegger films.
In spite of Thorsen's thick Danish accent, his voice is almost never dubbed (an exception being Hard Target). Thorsen pursued his role as Tigris (of Gaul) in Gladiator for over a year, beating Lou Ferrigno for the part. The part won him two TAURUS World Stunt Awards in the ceremony's inaugural year.
Thorsen has founded various federations, including The Danish Bodybuilding Federation in 1979 and Cigar Night at Schatzi in Santa Monica, California along with Schwarzenegger. He has a black belt in Shotokan karate and holds championship titles.
Sven-Ole Thorsen, born September 1944 is 195 centimetres (6 feet, 5 inches) tall and while appearing in Conan the Barbarian (1982) he weighed 138 kilograms (304 lbs), according to his autobiography (page 24 & 110) from which most of the following information is taken.
He has two sons, Michael and Martin, from his first marriage.
On his 40th birthday, Sven-Ole Thorsen decided to move from Denmark to the USA, which he did in April 1985.
Sven-Ole Thorsen is Married to Talent Manager, Film Producer, Casting Director, Author, Columnist and Chef Birgitta Sunding and Stepfather to her 3 children Karinna, Kenneth and Matthias.
Together they have 2 dogs Jake and Samson and they recide both in Los Angeles and Costa Blanca, Spain.