Actor Who Played Sloth In The Goonies

Title: The Actor Who Played Sloth in The Goonies: Unveiling the Man Behind the Iconic Character


In the beloved 1985 adventure film, The Goonies, one character in particular captured the hearts of audiences worldwide with his endearing charm and memorable appearance. Sloth, the lovable misfit, was brought to life by an exceptional actor who left an indelible mark on the film industry. In this article, we will delve into the life of the actor who played Sloth, uncovering intriguing facts about his career, personal life, and his portrayal of this iconic character. Additionally, we will answer some commonly asked questions to provide a comprehensive understanding of the talented individual behind Sloth.

1. Who Played Sloth in The Goonies?

John Matuszak, a former professional football player turned actor, brilliantly portrayed Sloth in The Goonies. Matuszak’s towering 6’7″ frame and distinctive facial features brought Sloth to life, creating an unforgettable character.

2. John Matuszak’s Early Life:

John Matuszak was born on October 25, 1950, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Known as “Tooz” to his friends and fans, he excelled in football during his high school and college years, ultimately leading him to a successful career in the NFL.

3. Transition from Football to Acting:

After retiring from professional football, Matuszak ventured into acting. He made his debut in the 1979 film, North Dallas Forty, earning critical acclaim for his performance as the intimidating football player, O.W. Shaddock. This marked the beginning of his acting career, which eventually led him to the role of Sloth in The Goonies.

4. Facts About The Goonies’ Sloth:

a. Makeup Transformation: To create the iconic Sloth appearance, it took hours of prosthetic makeup application. The intricate process involved attaching a foam latex mask and prosthetics to Matuszak’s face, transforming him into the lovable yet misunderstood character.

b. Sloth’s Catchphrase: One of the most memorable aspects of Sloth’s character was his catchphrase, “Hey, you guys!” This line quickly became a fan favorite, solidifying Sloth’s place in cinematic history.

c. Behind-the-Scenes Bonding: During the filming of The Goonies, Matuszak formed a close bond with the young actors, who played the Goonies themselves. They were particularly fond of his company, often seeking his guidance and support.

d. Physical Challenges: Portraying Sloth was no easy feat, as Matuszak had to overcome the physical challenges associated with the heavy prosthetics and makeup. Despite these difficulties, Matuszak’s dedication to his craft allowed him to deliver an unforgettable performance.

e. Posterity of Sloth: Even after nearly four decades, Sloth remains an iconic figure in popular culture. His appearance and catchphrase continue to be referenced and celebrated, solidifying John Matuszak’s legacy as a talented actor.

Common Questions about John Matuszak and Sloth:

1. What was John Matuszak’s height and weight?

John Matuszak stood tall at 6’7″ and weighed around 280 pounds during his career as both a football player and actor.

2. Did John Matuszak have a spouse?

Yes, John Matuszak was married to Stephanie Cozart from 1979 until his passing in 1989. They had two children together.

3. How old was John Matuszak when he played Sloth in The Goonies?

John Matuszak was 34 years old when he portrayed Sloth in The Goonies, which was released in 1985.

4. What other movies did John Matuszak appear in?

Apart from The Goonies, John Matuszak appeared in various films, including Caveman (1981), The Ice Pirates (1984), and One Man Force (1989).

5. Did John Matuszak continue acting after The Goonies?

Yes, John Matuszak continued his acting career post-The Goonies, appearing in several films and television shows until his untimely death in 1989.

6. What was John Matuszak’s cause of death?

John Matuszak passed away on June 17, 1989, due to a mix of cocaine and an opioid painkiller. His death was ruled an accidental overdose.

7. Did John Matuszak win any awards for his acting?

While John Matuszak did not receive any major awards for his acting, his portrayal of Sloth in The Goonies remains highly regarded and beloved by audiences.

8. Did John Matuszak have any football achievements?

Yes, John Matuszak achieved great success in football, winning two Super Bowl championships with the Oakland Raiders in 1977 and 1981.

9. How long did it take to apply the Sloth makeup?

The prosthetic makeup application for Sloth took several hours each day, often starting in the early morning before filming began.

10. How did John Matuszak prepare for his role as Sloth?

Matuszak spent significant time studying the script, understanding the nuances of Sloth’s character, and working with the makeup and special effects teams to bring the character to life.

11. Did John Matuszak enjoy playing Sloth?

Yes, John Matuszak embraced the role of Sloth and had a fantastic time working with the cast and crew of The Goonies. He considered it one of the highlights of his acting career.

12. Was Sloth a challenging role for John Matuszak?

Playing Sloth presented numerous physical challenges due to the prosthetics and makeup, but Matuszak’s dedication and passion for the role helped him overcome these obstacles.

13. How has Sloth’s character influenced popular culture?

Sloth’s character has become an enduring icon, inspiring countless references, parodies, and tributes in movies, television shows, and even Halloween costumes.

14. What is John Matuszak’s legacy?

John Matuszak’s legacy extends beyond his role as Sloth. He was a versatile actor and a beloved figure in both the football and entertainment industries, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of fans worldwide.


John Matuszak’s portrayal of Sloth in The Goonies not only captivated audiences but also showcased his exceptional talent as an actor. Despite his untimely passing, Matuszak’s legacy lives on through the enduring popularity of Sloth and the impact he made on the world of cinema. His dedication, both on and off the screen, continues to inspire and entertain millions, forever etching his name in the annals of film history.

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