April markiert wurde. At a television taping on December 13,the Colossal Connection defeated Demolition to win the titles. Roussimoff's next major feud was learn more here Jake "The Snake" Roberts. Oktober Died: January 28age 46 in Paris, France.
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He was later a charter member of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall of Fame and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame ; the latter describes him as being "one of the most recognizable figures in the world both as a professional wrestler and as a pop culture icon.
His parents were immigrants to France; his father was Bulgarian and his mother was Polish. He also completed an apprenticeship in woodworking , and next worked in a factory that manufactured engines for hay balers.
None of these occupations, however, brought him any satisfaction. At the age of 18, Roussimoff moved to Paris and was taught professional wrestling by a local promoter, Obert Lageat, who recognized the earning potential of Roussimoff's size.
He trained at night and worked as a mover during the day to pay living expenses. Canadian promoter and wrestler Frank Valois met Roussimoff in , years later to become his business manager and adviser.
He made his Japanese debut in , billed as "Monster Roussimoff", wrestling for the International Wrestling Enterprise.
Wrestling as both a singles and tag-team competitor, he quickly was made the company's tag-team champion alongside Michael Nador.
Roussimoff next moved to Montreal , Canada in , where he became an immediate success, regularly selling out the Montreal Forum. He felt Roussimoff should be portrayed as a large, immovable monster, and to enhance the perception of his size, McMahon discouraged Roussimoff from performing maneuvers such as dropkicks although he was capable of performing such agile maneuvers before his health deteriorated in later life.
Roussimoff was one of professional wrestling's most beloved "babyfaces" throughout the s and early s. In , Roussimoff fought professional boxer Chuck Wepner in an unscripted boxer-versus-wrestler fight.
The wild fight was shown via telecast as part of the undercard of the Muhammad Ali versus Antonio Inoki fight and ended when he threw Wepner over the top rope and outside the ring and won via count-out.
In he feuded with Hulk Hogan , when, unlike their more famous matches in the late s, Hogan was the villain and Roussimoff was the hero, wrestling him at Shea Stadium's Showdown at Shea and in Pennsylvania, where after Roussimoff pinned Hogan to win the match, Hogan bodyslammed him much like their legendary WrestleMania III match in The feud continued in Japan in and with their roles reversed and with Antonio Inoki also involved.
In , Vince McMahon, Sr. According to the storyline, Khan had snapped Roussimoff's ankle during a match on May 2, , in Rochester, New York , by leaping off the top rope and crashing down upon it with his knee-drop.
The two battled on July 20, , at Madison Square Garden in a match that resulted in a double disqualification. On November 14, , at the Philadelphia Spectrum , he decisively defeated Khan in what was billed as a "Mongolian stretcher match", in which the loser must be taken to the dressing room on a stretcher.
In early the two also fought in a series of matches in Japan with Arnold Skaaland in Roussimoff's corner. Another feud involved a man who considered himself to be the "true giant" of wrestling: Big John Studd.
In , Studd took the feud to a new level when he and partner Ken Patera knocked out Roussimoff during a televised tag-team match and proceeded to cut off his hair.
The following year, at WrestleMania 2 , on April 7, , Roussimoff continued to display his dominance by winning a twenty-man battle royal which featured top National Football League stars and wrestlers.
Around this time, Roussimoff requested a leave of absence to tend to his health, effects from his acromegaly that were beginning to take their toll, as well as tour Japan.
He had also been cast in the film The Princess Bride. To explain his absence, a storyline was developed in which Heenan—suggesting that Roussimoff was secretly afraid of Studd and Bundy, whom Heenan bragged were unbeatable—challenged Roussimoff and a partner of his choosing to wrestle Studd and Bundy in a televised tag-team match.
The WWF's television announcers sold the Machines—a gimmick that was copied from the New Japan Pro Wrestling character "Super Strong Machine", played by Japanese wrestler Junji Hirata ,  —as "a new tag-team from Japan" and claimed not to know the identities of the wrestlers, even though it was obvious to fans that it was Roussimoff competing as the Giant Machine.
Heenan, Studd, and Bundy complained to Tunney, who eventually told Heenan that if it could be proven that Roussimoff and the Giant Machine were the same person, Roussimoff would be fired.
Roussimoff thwarted Heenan, Studd, and Bundy at every turn. Then, in late , the Giant Machine "disappeared," and Roussimoff was reinstated.
Foreshadowing Roussimoff's heel turn, Heenan expressed his approval of the reinstatement but did not explain why. Roussimoff agreed to turn heel in early to be the counter to the biggest " babyface " in professional wrestling at that time, Hulk Hogan.
Hogan came out to congratulate him and ended up being the focal point of the interview. Apparently annoyed, he walked out in the midst of Hogan's speech.
Hogan was still seemingly in disbelief as to what Roussimoff was doing, prompting Heenan to say "You can't believe it, maybe you'll believe this, Hogan" before Roussimoff ripped off the T-shirt and crucifix from Hogan, with the crucifix scratching Hogan's chest, causing him to bleed.
Another myth about the match is that no one, not even WWF owner Vince McMahon , knew until the day of the event whether Roussimoff would lose the match.
In reality, he had agreed to lose the match sometime before, mostly for health reasons. Contrary to popular belief, it was not the first time that Hogan had successfully body-slammed him in a WWF match.
The feud between Roussimoff and Hogan simmered during the summer of , as Roussimoff's health declined. The feud began heating up again when wrestlers were named the captains of rival teams at the inaugural Survivor Series event.
During their approximately one minute of battling each other during the match, Hogan dominated Roussimoff and was on the brink of knocking him from the ring, but was tripped up by his partners, Bundy and One Man Gang , and would be counted out.
Roussimoff later got revenge when, after Hogan won a match against Bundy on Saturday Night's Main Event , he snuck up from behind and began choking Hogan to the brink of unconsciousness, not letting go even after an army of seven face-aligned wrestlers ran to the ring to try to pull him away; it took Hacksaw Jim Duggan breaking a piece of wood over his back which he no-sold for him to let go, after which Hogan was pulled to safety.
As was the case with the SNME battle royal a year earlier, the series of events was one of the pieces that helped build interest in a possible one-on-one rematch between Hogan and Roussimoff, and to make it seem that Roussimoff was certain to win easily when they did meet.
After failing to defeat Hogan in a subsequent series of matches, DiBiase turned to Roussimoff to win it for him.
Acting as his hired gun, Roussimoff won the WWF World Heavyweight Championship from Hogan his first singles title in a match where it was later revealed that appointed referee Dave Hebner was "detained backstage", and a replacement whom Hogan afterwards initially accused of having been paid by DiBiase to get plastic surgery to look like Dave,  but was revealed to have been his evil twin brother, Earl Hebner ,  made a three count on Hogan while his shoulders were off the mat.
After winning, Roussimoff "sold" the title to DiBiase; the transaction was declared invalid by then- WWF president Jack Tunney and the title was declared vacant.
Afterward, Roussimoff and Hogan's feud died down after a steel cage match held at WrestleFest on July 31, , in Milwaukee.
This allowed Hogan and Savage time to recover and eventually win the match with Hogan pinning DiBiase. Savage forced Ventura's hand down for the final three-count, due to Ventura's character historically being at odds with Hogan, and his unwillingness to count the fall.
Concurrent with the developing feud with the Mega Powers, Roussimoff was placed in a feud with Jim Duggan , which began after Duggan knocked out Roussimoff with a two-by-four board during a television taping.
Despite Duggan's popularity with fans, Roussimoff regularly got the upper hand in the feud. Roussimoff's next major feud was against Jake "The Snake" Roberts.
In this storyline, it was said Roussimoff was afraid of snakes , something Roberts exposed on Saturday Night's Main Event when he threw his snake, Damien, on the frightened Roussimoff; as a result, he suffered a kayfabe mild heart attack and vowed revenge.
During the next few weeks, Roberts frequently walked to ringside carrying his snake in its bag during Roussimoff's matches, causing the latter to run from the ring in fright.
Throughout their feud which culminated at WrestleMania V , Roberts constantly used Damien to gain a psychological edge over the much larger and stronger Roussimoff.
In , Roussimoff and the returning Big John Studd briefly reprised their feud, beginning at WrestleMania V, when Studd was the referee in the match with Roberts, this time with Studd as a face and Roussimoff as the heel.
During the late summer and Autumn of , he engaged in a brief feud, consisting almost entirely of house shows non-televised events , with then- Intercontinental Champion The Ultimate Warrior.
The younger Warrior, WWF's rising star, regularly squashed the aging Roussimoff in an attempt to showcase his star quality and promote him as the "next big thing".
In late , Roussimoff was joined with fellow Heenan Family member Haku to form a new tag team called the Colossal Connection , in part to fill a void left by the departure of Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson the Brain Busters , who were also members of Heenan's stable from the WWF, and also to continue to keep the aging Roussimoff in the main event spotlight.
At a television taping on December 13, , the Colossal Connection defeated Demolition to win the titles. Due to his ongoing health issues, Roussimoff was not able to wrestle at the time of Wrestlemania VI and Haku actually wrestled the entire match against Demolition without tagging him in.
However Roussimoff would wrestle one more time with Haku, teaming up to face Demolition on a house show in Honolulu, HI, on April 10, Roussimoff was knocked out of the ring and The Colossal Connection lost via count-out.
After the match, Roussimoff and Haku would fight each other, marking the end of the team. Roussimoff would win by gaining the pinfall on Smash.
Roussimoff returned in the winter of , but it was not to the World Wrestling Federation. Roussimoff was also mentioned as a participant on television but would ultimately back out due to a leg injury.
Fuji trying to recruit Roussimoff one-by-one, only to be turned down in various humiliating ways e. Heenan had his hand crushed, Sherri received a spanking, Slick got locked in the trunk of the car he was offering to Roussimoff and Mr.
Fuji got a pie in his face. However, when asked to confirm this by Gene Okerlund , Roussimoff denied the claims. This led to Earthquake's attacking Roussimoff from behind injuring his knee.
The Disasters left the ringside area as they were outnumbered by the Legion of Doom, the Bushwhackers and Roussimoff, who struck both Earthquake and Typhoon the former Tugboat with the crutch as they left.
Davey Boy hit Earthquake with Roussimoff's crutch, allowing Smith to win. His last U. Roussimoff branched out into acting again in the s and s, after a French boxing film, making his USA acting debut playing a Sasquatch " Bigfoot " in a two-part episode aired in on the television series The Six Million Dollar Man.
Towards the end of his career, Roussimoff starred in several films. He had an uncredited appearance in the film Conan the Destroyer as Dagoth,  the resurrected horned giant god who is killed by Conan Arnold Schwarzenegger.
He appeared most notably as Fezzik, his own favorite role,  in the film The Princess Bride. Both the film and his performance retain a devoted following.
In shoot interviews, wrestlers have stated that he was so proud of being in the film that he carried a copy everywhere he went and insisted a VCR be available in his hotel rooms on the road so he could watch it repeatedly.
In his last film, he appeared in a cameo role as a circus giant in the comedy Trading Mom , which was released in , a year after his death.
Roussimoff was mentioned in the Guinness Book of World Records as the highest-paid wrestler in history at that time. Robin Christensen is Roussimoff's only child.
Her mother Jean who died in became acquainted with her father through the wrestling business around or Christensen had almost no connection with her father and saw him only five times in her life, despite occasional televised and printed news pieces criticizing his absentee fatherhood.
While she gave some interviews about the subject in her childhood, Christensen is reportedly reluctant to discuss her father publicly today.
The Fabulous Moolah wrote in her autobiography that Roussimoff drank beers in a Reading, Pennsylvania , hotel bar and later passed out in the lobby.
The staff could not move him and had to leave him there until he awoke. After nine or so hours, Roussimoff had drunk beers.
An urban legend exists surrounding Roussimoff's surgery in which his size made it impossible for the anesthesiologist to estimate a dosage via standard methods; consequently, his alcohol tolerance was used as a guideline instead.
Roussimoff was arrested in by the sheriff of Linn County, Iowa ; and charged with assault after he allegedly attacked a local television cameraman.
Whenever Roussimoff ate with someone in a restaurant, he would pay, but he would also insist on paying when he was a guest.
On one occasion, after Roussimoff attended a dinner with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Wilt Chamberlain , Schwarzenegger had quietly moved to the cashier to pay before Roussimoff could, but then found himself being physically lifted, carried from his table and deposited on top of his car by Roussimoff and Chamberlain.
Roussimoff owned a ranch in Ellerbe, North Carolina , looked after by two of his close friends. When he was not on the road, he loved spending time at the ranch tending to his cattle, playing with his dogs and entertaining company.
While there were custom-made chairs and a few other modifications in his home to account for his size, tales that everything in his home was custom-made for a large man are said to be exaggerated.
Since Roussimoff could not easily go shopping due to his fame and size, he was known to spend hours watching QVC and made frequent purchases from the shopping channel.
Roussimoff died in his sleep of congestive heart failure on the night of January 27, , in a Paris hotel room.
He was found by his chauffeur. He spent the day before his death visiting and playing cards with some of his oldest friends in Molien.
In his will, Roussimoff specified that his remains be cremated and "disposed of". Upon his death in Paris, his family in France held a funeral for him, intending to bury him near his father.
When they learned of his wish to be cremated, his body was flown to the United States, where he was cremated according to his wishes.
The video is hosted by Lord Alfred Hayes. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. French professional wrestler and actor. Main article: The Colossal Connection.
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Two or three of them were in the wrestling ring. The others were in court. The two were ultimately unable to form a proper father-daughter bond, which was reportedly one of Andre's greatest regrests, as he truly loved his daughter.
Not that he didn't make an attempt to connect with her. He was wary of meeting Robin in public and subjecting her to giant dad-related gawking, so he tried multiple times to get her to visit his ranch in North Carolina.
Unfortunately, this never came to pass, because Robin was quite young at the time and didn't want to make the trip without her mother Im gleichen Jahr erschien er als erster Wrestler in der Sports Illustrated.
Ein Knöchelbruch, welcher aus seinem gewaltigen Körpergewicht resultierte, wurde als Storyline für eine Fehde gegen Killer Khan genutzt.
Ihren Höhepunkt fand diese Fehde bei Wrestlemania 1 im Jahr Studd wettete Der Kampf fand im Pontiac Silverdome in Michigan vor angeblich über Hintergrund war, dass mit ihm langfristig nicht mehr als Titelträger geplant werden konnte.
Deshalb bildete man ein Team mit Haku , das sich Colossal Connection nannte. Gemanagt von Bobby Heenan durften sie den damaligen Tag-Team -Champions Demolition die Titel abnehmen  , verloren diese bei Wrestlemania 6 aber wieder an dieselben.
Eine interessante Randnotiz hierzu ist, dass Andre nur kurze Zeit später Demolition in Japan besiegen durfte, diesmal mit seinem japanischen Pendant Giant Baba als Partner.
Simon and Schuster. Canada: ECW Press. Retrieved September 11, At his largest, Roussimoff was probably six feet eleven inches tall, though he was advertised as seven feet four inches.
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Pocket Books. Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum. Archived from the original on January 4, Retrieved February 18, January 13, Retrieved February 27, Wrestling Titles.
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The History of WWE. Retrieved February 13, Puroresu Central. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. Archived from the original on October 21, Retrieved February 14, Archived from the original on October 29, WWE Encyclopedia.
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