Franco Columbu Birthday & Fun Facts

Height, Age, Net Worth, Biography & More

Anusuya Mukherjee
Jan 31, 2024 By Anusuya Mukherjee
Originally Published on May 19, 2022
Fact-checked by Pradhanya Rao
Read Franco Columbu facts to know more about this Italian native athlete's career and Olympic weightlifting.
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Read time: 4.2 Min

About Franco Columbu

Francesco Maria Columbu was born in Ollolai, Italy, and his date of birth was August 7, 1941.
Franco Columbu died at the age of 78 on August 30, 2019. The place of his death was San Teodoro, Sardinia, Italy.
Franco Columbu was not just a bodybuilder but also an actor, producer, author, chiropractor, and powerlifter. In 1976, Franco Columbu gained the Mr. Olympia title as a boxer, and again in 1981, the Mr. Olympia title was won by him. In 1977, he is known to have participated in the World's Strongest Man competition and achieved fifth place. Franco Columbu was a multitasker who also earned a great name and fame in his acting career. He also wrote many books on nutrition and bodybuilding techniques. In 2001, Franco Columbu was selected for the IFBB Hall of Fame, and he even achieved in his writing career in 2009. In 2009, Franco Columbu achieved the Arnold Classic Lifetime Achievement Award. Mr. Olympia, who acted in 'The Running Man', died due to a severe heart attack and drowned while swimming on August 30, 2019 in San Teodoro.

Franco Columbu's Net Worth, Earnings & Spending Habits

What was Franco Columbu’s net worth?

The net worth of Franco Columbu was $10 million. The main sources of his income were bodybuilding, powerlifting, acting, producing, and acting. He was a successful man with a good net worth who was also into writing and the chiropractic profession, which made him earn well.

How much did Franco Columbu earn per year?

The per-year or annual earnings of Franco Columbu are unknown and are yet to be reviewed. His weight training and certain titles, such as Mr. Olympia, made him earn well in Italy.

Height, Age & Physical Attributes

How tall was Franco Columbu?

Franco Columbu's height was 5 ft 4 in (165 cm) and he had a strong, muscular body like that of an athlete.

How old was Franco Columbu?

Franco Columbu was born in Ollolai, Italy on August 7, 1941. Due to some unfortunate incidents, Franco Columbu died on August 30, 2019, in Italy. So, at 78, he died, leaving behind his memories and achievements.

Childhood And Education

Franco Columbu was born in the Italian town of Ollolai in the region of Sardinia on August 7, 1941.
The parents of Franco Columbu, Maria Grazia Sedda and Antonio Columbu, were herders. He admitted that he was always on the smaller side in 1982. Up to the age of 11 years, he was beaten up by his parents for his parents, until one day, he started hitting others. Since then, no one was able to approach him. While practicing to be a boxer, he was also a shepherd. He ended up winning almost 30 matches as a boxer and eventually pursued bodybuilding and weightlifting as he found boxing to be too rough.
When he was young, Columbu traveled abroad to Germany seeking employment when he encountered Arnold Schwarzenegger during a bodybuilding contest in Stuttgart, Germany, in 1965. Schwarzenegger and Columbu had a lifelong connection; Franco Columbu was Schwarzenegger's best man during his 1986 wedding to Maria Shriver, as well as godfather to his baby girl, Christina. Up until Columbu's demise, he and Schwarzenegger stayed good friends.

Family, Romance, And Relationships

Who was Franco Columbu’s partner?

Franco Columbu, before his death, was a married man. He married Anita Sanangelo in 1986. For some unknown reasons, they got divorced in 1990. Anita Sanangelo, at the time when they first met Franco Columbu, was a chiropractor too. After the divorce, Franco Columbu got married to Deborah Columbu in 1990. His second marriage to Deborah Columbu was successful, and the couple had a beautiful daughter, Maria Columbu.

Career And Professional Highlights

Best Known For…

Franco Columbu is best known for his Mr. Olympia title. He is also known for many bodybuilding titles, participating in the World's Strongest Man, and powerlifting records.

What awards did Franco Columbu win?

Franco Columbu has received many awards in his career. His name is also registered in the Guinness Book of Records. He received the Arnold Classic Lifetime Achievement Award and the Mr. Olympia title twice in life. Franco Columbu was able to achieve many powerlifting titles as well as bodybuilding titles.

Franco Columbu’s Hobbies And Interests

Franco Columbu was proficient in many fields, but he also had a hobby of travelling. Franco Columbu always enjoyed travelling around the world. He no doubt had a good net worth, which even helped to fulfil his hobby of travelling and exploring around beautiful places.

Other Interesting Franco Columbu Facts And Trivia

  • In comparison to Arnold, Franco Columbu weighed nearly 60 lb (27 kg) lesser.
  • Lou Ferrigno is an American fitness trainer, bodybuilder, and actor whose net worth is around $12 million.
  • The bench press record of Franco Columbu was 525 lb (238 kg).
  • Franco Columbu was buried on September 3, 2019. His place of burial is Ololai's Cemetery, Italy.
  • The professional career of an actor in bodybuilding and his athletic career made him a star of his era.
  • His name is also recorded in The Guinness Book Of Records in 1978. He blew into the hot bottle of water and within 55 seconds, the bottle burst. This created a new record.
  • He also starred in 'Pumping Iron' which was a small documentary made on bodybuilding.
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Franco Columbu Birthday & Fun Facts Facts

Birth Name

Francesco Maria Columbu

Date of Birth


Date of Death





165 cm


Bodybuilder, Chiropractor, Author, Producer, Actor

Net Worth



Deborah Columbu


Maria Grazia Sedda, Antonio Columbu


Anna, Gonaria, Celestina
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Written by Anusuya Mukherjee

Bachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

Anusuya Mukherjee picture

Anusuya MukherjeeBachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

With a wealth of international experience spanning Europe, Africa, North America, and the Middle East, Anusuya brings a unique perspective to her work as a Content Assistant and Content Updating Coordinator. She holds a law degree from India and has practiced law in India and Kuwait. Anusuya is a fan of rap music and enjoys a good cup of coffee in her free time. Currently, she is working on her novel, "Mr. Ivory Merchant".

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