On February 24, 1937, New York Yankee superstar Lou Gehrig did a screen test to play the role of Tarzan in the movies.
High school and college athletics prevented Gehrig from getting a chance to try other activities. Since he had a little free time, he figured, why not. He could face the cameras and was used to talking on the radio. As for the leading lady, if he had the choice, it would be his wife because, “I could act much better with my wife in my arms.”
Gehrig was interested in the role for financial and artistic reasons.He even thought if he took the part, the directors would put something baseball related into the movie because Johnny Weissmuller, a veteran to the roll of Tarzan, was able to show off his swimming ability when he had the role. Weissmuller was given the lead role of Tarzan in the movie.
In the end Gehrig did not get the part because Producer Sol Lesser thought his legs were more functional than decorative.
Here is a picture of Gehrig from his Tarzan photo shoot.
Related Link: http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1876&dat=19361021&id=_0osAAAAIBAJ&sjid=zMoEAAAAIBAJ&pg=6738,4356301 (Herald Journal article on Gehrig going to Hollywood) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0030833/trivia (Tarzan Trivia)