The Undertaker is an American professional wrestler signed to WWE. He is the company's most tenured performer, and he's also the only remaining active competitor from the very first episode of WWE Raw in 1993. Calaway began his wrestling career with World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) in 1984. In 1990, Calaway signed with the World Wrestling Federation and The Undertaker was born. The rest, as they say, was history!
Dan (Opened 2003)
Anan & Ed
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Like many fans of their feminist rape revenge indie American Mary, I was a bit blindsided by news that the next movie coming from the Soska Sisters was a sequel to the 2006 WWE Studios produced slasher flick starring champion wrestler Glenn Jacobs, a.k.a. Kane. Alongside Kane, See No Evil 2 stars scream queen Danielle Harris (Rob Zombie’s Halloween) and Katherine Isabelle(American Mary) and is scheduled to materialise in early 2014 with Lionsgate handling worldwide distribution.
And given how quickly it rolled before cameras (the entire film was shot in just 15 days in October), I assumed it was more or less a ‘director for hire’ paycheque type gig for the filmmakers. Or who knows? Maybe they were actually long time wrestling fans and this was one of their dream projects?
Either way, I had to find out. So I reached out to the Twisted Twins with just one question:
STUART FEEDBACK ANDREWS: See No Evil 2? What the fuck?!!!
JEN SOSKA: You’re not alone in the “what the dick are the Soskas thinking?” category. You’re actually quite right. We are LONG time WWE fans, from back when it was the WWF not WWE and the content was uber mature and not quite as clean as they try to go for these days.
We started to watch one day when I saw the Undertaker on TV. He wasn’t wrestling, he was talking to the audience and I fell instantly in love. It was 1997 and the WWF was doing a big build up to introduce the Undertaker’s fabled brother, Kane. It was amazing how he owned the mic and like a rockstar commanded the attention of the audience. He became my favorite and Sylv loved Shawn Michaels. They faced off that year in a match that would be interrupted (very much in typical WWE fashion) by the arrival of Kane. That very year, Lionsgate Studios formed in our hometown of Vancouver and we dreamed of one day working there.
JEN SOSKA: When we were asked to read the script with the two studios attached, we were excited. We have read so many scripts since MARY came out and had so many studio offers. Every single one wanted the same thing. AMERICAN MARYagain. Same budget, same medical horror theme, starring Katie. I couldn’t fucking believe it! After trying so hard to make something new and original and being shot down again and again only to have people want that exact movie after we just made it was really annoying. Also, anything that differed allowed no money, all under a million, and with no allowance for us to have any script input.
The script we read first for SNE2 was solid and we were assured we would have full support and creative freedom, which has actually turned out quite true. In fact, you may be surprised by how much freedom they’ve given us. We have long wanted to be able to tackle every sub genre in horror and to do this style of Halloween~esque horror movie. To get to do it with one of our very favorite wrestlers was a big win. And as you know, we’re shameless self promoters and it’s pretty incredible to have the power of the WWE behind us.
JEN SOSKA: So, yeah, it really is a passion project and an obvious underdog. I mean, I’ve seen the first one and we both felt Glenn deserved a much better film. He’s a very sweet guy and a tremendous actor. And now a friend.
Doing this and having been bullied in school for our dark tastes and wrestling love, I know that we will take a lot of shit for this film and there will be plenty of people going in wanting to hate it that will no matter how good it is.
But I’ll tell you this, this film is very fucking good. It’s AMERICAN KANE~Y. It’s got a full range of emotion and it’s actually scary. We’ve done upsetting, but this is terrifying. It’s an action horror movie. It has real gore to make happy everyone who missed it in MARY and it still has incredibly emotional scenes throughout. No throw away characters and an all star cast.
But I think a lot of people will be blown the fuck away by it. Especially since they’re expecting us to be on a tight studio leash and pump out a piece of crap. I will tell you one thing. We sure as hell aren’t doing it for the money, ha ha.
The first See No Evil movie, while not anywhere near as great as the iconic horror films and I don’t think it was intended to be, is IMO, the best film to have a WWE star in it. All this talk about See No Evil 2 from The Twisted Twins and Kane has me wanting to see the second one. Man, I’d love for Taker ohave been in it, somehow. Him and Jacob Goodnight would have a massive body count without question. But it’s Kane’s move and deservingly so.
The Mirror in the U.K. has an opinion piece about WM 30 match possibilities. Since WWE’s keeping their cards close to their chest, there’s no definite match suggestion that’s a lock to happen. Here’s the speculative piece that makes some suggestions favoring Cena vs. Taker instead of Lesnar vs. Taker…
Four months away from WWE WrestleMania XXX and the line-up doesn’t seem all that obvious.
This is both a good and a bad thing. We shouldn’t want predictability in terms of set up storylines. It would be nice for someone to appear out of the blue or for two men to suddenly find themselves on a collision course for New Orleans.
On the other hand, with so many big names rumoured to be making a return or debut on the big show, the unsubstantiated social media speculation won’t be calming down any time soon.
Those names linked with a Wrestlemania appearance include: Shawn Michaels, The Rock, Steve Austin, Hulk Hogan, Goldberg, Batista, Brock Lesnar, Rob Van Dam, Chris Jericho and Sting.
Let us not quibble over whether or not they should be there. For now, it is just worth pondering some of the bigger names that might show up, how likely they are to, and how they could shape the course of the first three-and-a-bit months of 2014.
It seems more likely than not that Rock misses ‘Mania this year. For a start, WWE would be facing diminishing returns to feature for a fourth year, however big his star may shine in Hollywood. The ship has sailed on Austin ever returning to the ring. RVD and Jericho may show up, but they are unlikely to feature too high up in the card.
Goldberg is said to be speaking with WWE, but his involvement would be unlikely to stretch to anything more than a two minute smash-and-bash effort with Ryback. Sting is more possible this year than ever, but the Sting/Taker match that so many crave is just not viable at this stage of each man’s career.
Hogan? Might well show up, and there’s an outside chance of a bit-part in a six man tag or the like. Nothing more.
The other three are all very possible. And ‘Mania may well hinge on which of them, if any, signs on the line.
The most important is Shawn Michaels. If there is ever a time for him to have one more match then it is with Daniel Bryan at Wrestlemania. Shawn looks as if he could still get into ring-shape, and it wouldn’t just be any old wrestler he is breaking a retirement pledge to face. More importantly, the match would be a surefire classic, and has that dream-match feel that would make long term fans part with their cash.
If you pencil in Bryan and Michaels (but don’t call them Matchstalk Men), then the more important question you must then answer is what you do with Undertaker. The Undertaker’s streak is one of the very biggest draws at the biggest event in the calendar, so his match is probably the most important thing going. Accordingly, he should compete against the biggest star at the biggest show of all.
John Cena is the perfect person to face ‘Taker. He is capable, despite what some might claim, of having great matches. He tells great stories, has a watertight character and, if he stays away from the lame gags, can have great verbal battles with the Deadman. Those that take on ‘Taker become villains by default, and Cena has no problem fulfilling that role.
The most important thing though is that by ‘Taker wrestling Cena you have a sense of jeopardy about whether ‘Taker may actually lose. I don’t see that he ever will, but in Cena you have someone that many fans, particular the younger ones among the WWE audience, believe in. You also have a suspicious fringe online that may believe that John, playing his so-called SuperCena role, will be allowed to be victorious.
The last point comes from a paranoid place, but isn’t entirely without foundation. ‘Taker versus anybody else means that the streak stays alive, but if I had to pick anyone who I thought WWE might go with if determining that it will one day end, it would be Cena. That’s not me saying that it is right or it is wrong, but I’m saying it would be more believable that Cena were to get his arm raised compared to the prospects of other opponents.
Lesnar is an option for ‘Taker’s opponent, and would be a good one, but that believablility factor disappears a little. Not in Brock’s credentials, but whether anyone would believe that he actually would win. Casual fans will see Brock as a monster, but one that has only won 60% of his matches since returning.
Lesnar matching up with Punk at ‘Mania would be a far better pick. The two had the best match of 2013 at Summerslam, and there is still mileage in Punk’s ultimate revenge on Paul Heyman.
Heyman has practically promised to return and destroy Punk, so it would not be a shock to see Lesnar emerge with Heyman by his side to scupper Punk at a crucial moment, reigniting their feud and leading to a rematch at Mania.
But how about this scenario…
Let’s imagine that Cena and Orton conjure up a way of dropping the belts from the ladder, or they are taken out by a mysterious force, or whatever the case may be. Once again, Triple H puts the title in abeyance (love that word) and declares, like 1992, that the winner of the Royal Rumble will be crowned undisputed champ.
Cue Brock Lesnar.
The Beast defeats all at the Rumble, and soon Punk emerges as his natural opponent. Maybe he wins a tournament or the Elimination Chamber match, but the point is you have the perfect moment for Punk’s redemption, and the reclaiming of his title, at Wrestlemania.
If Batista is up for a return, what about a Shield vs Evolution battle as a fourth match to bulk up the card? Should Big Dave not fancy coming back, or WWE don’t want to turn The Shield yet, Randy Orton vs Triple H could be an option.
Undertaker vs John Cena. Shawn Michaels vs Daniel Bryan. Brock Lesnar vs CM Punk. If all are willing, that is a tremendous top three matches to sell a PPV with.
What about it WWE?
Source: WWE Wrestlemania 30 line up: John Cena vs Undertaker and CM Punk vs Brock Lesnar, make it happen WWE – Rob McNichol – Mirror Online
Any thoughts on this opinion piece?
This appeared in the Baltimore Sun a couple days ago. It’s a pretty good interview. Here’s the full article/interview below.
After decades of terrorizing enemies in the ring (and a famous stint becoming one himself), Robert Remus, better known to fans as Sgt. Slaughter, is a public ambassador for WWE. He can be seen on many nights representing the company at charity events and at local independent wrestling events.
“Part of my job is to send new talent [to WWE]“, Slaughter, 65, said in a phone interview on Tuesday promoting WWE’s latest DVD releases (“RAW 20th Anniversary Collection” and “The History of WWE: 50 Years of Sports Entertainment”).
“I attend a few independent events. WWE has allowed me to go out and do that. The best way to find new talent is to watch them in action. The talent knows that so they put on an extra special show and work hard in their matches. I let them know I’m there to watch, like a drill instructor. If I see someone I feel is worthy and has what the WWE is looking for, I’ll take their names and send them in the right direction.”
One name in particular that Sarge has helped bring to WWE is Bryan Danielson, aka Daniel Bryan.
“A lot of us saw a lot in Daniel Bryan. He was on that circuit. I brought his name up and sent his picture and resume in pretty much all the time.”
When asked how he feels the Daniel Bryan character is being treated in WWE today, Slaughter doesn’t hold back.
“I don’t think he’s being treated fairly. [The people at WWE] are making him work awfully hard to be successful and he’s not letting them down. He’s working harder than ever. He’s like a giant slayer. He takes on the biggest and the best. Kind of like Dolph Ziggler — he’s another talent I thought he wasn’t being used right, and I brought it up in several production meetings that they shouldn’t do his character as they were.
“It takes time. You can’t do it for everybody. For example, a guy like Randy Orton, there wasn’t much to teach him inside the ring. I wrestled his grandfather and his father. All the teaching for him was done outside the ring. He was a tough nut to crack. He had a mind of his own, and still does. He’s another talent that exceeds and has so much ability.”
Many fans remember Sgt. Slaughter as the Iraqi sympathizer, winning the WWE championship from the Ultimate Warrior at the 1991 Royal Rumble. What many people may not know is that in and around this stint, he was asked by Vince McMahon to become part of the backstage brain trust — a position that led him to help discover one of the most iconic WWE Superstars of all time.
“One of my all time favorites is The Undertaker, who was in a box of tapes when I was working in the office up in Connecticut. Part of my job was to go through the boxes of letters and resumes. One of them happened to be a young kid by he name of Mark Calaway, who has short red hair and he was working down in WCW. It was a tape and a little letter saying he’d be interested.”At the time, he was in a tag team. I remember on a Saturday I went to Vince McMahon’s office and I said I got this guy you should give a tryout to and Vince said he trusted me. WWE brought him into Rochester, N.Y. I showed Mark where to go, [said], ‘You’ll be the first match on the show.’ Halfway through the match, I was on head set and I hear Vince McMahon say ‘Where did you find this guy? Send him to my office.’ Mark came out of the ring and asked me how he did, and I said Vince wanted to see him. He thought he did something wrong.”
Sarge also shared an interesting story about The Undertaker’s name.
“We would have meetings after shows to talk about what happened and plan things out creatively,” Slaughter said. “The topic turned to Mark and Vince said he had an idea for a character name and he brought up the name Paul Bearer. The next day I went to Vince and I said I didn’t really care for that name for Mark in particular. I thought he looked different than that, and Vince said ‘like an Undertaker?’ and I said yeah! Maybe we should do Paul Bearer as his manager.”
The Undertaker would debut at the 1990 Survivor Series and assume the name “Cain the Undertaker” for a short period of time, with Brother Love as his manager before the late, great William Moody joined him as Paul Bearer.
Slaughter, a WWE Hall of Famer, also shared a fascinating tidbit about The Rock and a possible origin of his famous catchphrase, “It Doesn’t Matter.”
“I don’t know if it was the first time he heard, but I said it to him,” Slaughter said. “It was just a thing that I used to say a lot jokingly to friends. Talent was always told to talk to the legends if you have questions, don’t just mill around. Rock happened to walk by me and stopped to ask me something, and as he was asking I yelled ‘it doesn’t matter!’ It stopped him in his tracks, and he was startled. I started laughing and he started laughing a little bit and I told him I was only kidding. Rock delivers it a little bit different than how I did, but you get the idea.”
Source: WWE legend Sgt. Slaughter talks about Daniel Bryan, discovering The Undertaker and more – Baltimore Sun
JR talks about Taker on a recent blog and answers some Taker related questions.
JR’s thoughts on Taker vs Lesnar: It appears that the smart money, or is it, is on Brock Lesnar facing the Undertaker at WM30. That seems to be the strongest sentiment making the rounds online. For the record, I don’t know as it’s not my hill to die upon these days and I’m merely speculating. On paper, Lesnar vs. The Undertaker is an impressive match IF Lesnar is re-branded/re-energized to the WWE fan base as the indestructible “killer” that he can be. One matter to address is how often will either Taker or Brock appear on Monday Night RAW building up to the encounter to add adequate logs to the promotional fire? It sounds as if Paul Heyman will have to return to be the mouthpiece for Brock as Paul has done in the past, and done it damn well, but having the combatants appear on RAW only sporadically hampers the potential number of PPV buys which one would assume would lessen each man’s potential earnings.
matt313933 Asks: If you had complete creative control, who would you have Undertaker face for his last Wrestlemania match?
Someone who could appear on TV weekly to build the match. I don’t get paid for my fantasy booking but I consider the Streak a huge component for this year’s WM30 in particular.
JohnnyT Asks: Do you know the exact year Undertaker wrestled his first match (maybe even month) reported to be against Bruiser Brody? Internet suggests as far back as 1984 but I suspect it was later than that. Four years in World Class prior to WCW does not seem accurate at all.
Can’t one find this info on Google?
undertaker4ever Asks: Hey JR If Goldberg and WWE do happen to work out a deal, do you think this would be WWE’s best time to have him challenge Taker at WM30 or would you rather see Taker and Goldberg face other opponents instead of each other?
I’m not a proponent of Undertaker vs Goldberg at WM30.
Kimsan Song Asks: Ok, I lost internet connection right after I typed my question. I’m unsure if it went through. If so, sorry for the duplicate. I know you hate long winded questions/comments so I will attempt to keep this brief. I am listening to talk is jericos’s first podcast. It is cool to hear the rattle snake and Chris Jerico put over Taker the way they did. Lockerroom leader, observant individual, student of the game and jerico even went as far as calling him a sweetheart! I venture to assume that taker is a private individual for the most part, so I ask how often did you interact with taker while you were in the wrestling business? He sounds like a cool guy to chit chat with. It would be cool to meet him actually, just to shake his hand and say thanks for all of his contributions, even if he did give me nightmares as a young child, along side his manager . thank you for reading…
I interacted w/ Taker often. Weekly at worst. Still do occasionally. Class act as I’ve always said.
I agree with JR. The only things that would top Taker vs Lesnar IMO are Taker vs Angle because people have wanted that since WM22 back in 2006, Taker vs Sting because it’s a dream match that’s been waiting to happen for decades, and Taker getting a World Title shot against the Unified World Champion, whoever that may be.
News Published by Anan • December 8th, 2013
Filed in Categories: J.R. on Taker
courtesy of WWE’s Youtube page, here’s a an in-depth look at the masterpiece that is The Undertaker statue
I decided to also had the following video from WWE.com where Tood MacFarlane gives a sneak preview of the statue:
Todd did some amazing work here. I am definitely getting this. The bad news is that the statues that were hand-signed by Taker himself are SOLD OUT. I didn’t even know there were versions of the statue that had Taker’s signature till I saw the video with Renee. It’s ridiculous how a hot seller like this was only limited to 50. I didn’t even know Taker would sign it till I saw the video two posts above this one. They might have more later. But that thought is pretty hard to gamble with considering the statues signed by MacFarlane is limited to 750. The Taker signed ones should have at the very least been limited to 100-150 because more people would have bought that over any other version.
News Published by Anan • December 8th, 2013
Filed in Categories: Videos
The new game features a ‘30 years of WrestleMania’ mode. What are your greatest memories of the ones in which you fought?
WrestleMania was a very special event for me, a bit like an American footballer playing in the Superbowl. I was there from the second one in 1986 to WrestleMania XIII in 1997. Facing The Nasty Boys at WrestleMania VII was one of my best tag-team matches and solidified my solo career, which virtually commenced the next day. Then Rowdy Roddy Piper at WrestleMania VIII established that my style and storylines were always going to be a little different to Hulk Hogan or Sycho Sid [Sid Vicious].
Have you played the game as yourself when no one’s looking?
I play with my two sons who are much more competitive than I am and I try not to be myself because I get beat pretty bad. What I love is that you can plot out a strategy for winning a match and that you have to pick the correct moves at the right times a wrestler would use in real life. You can have pretty incredible matches that emulate some of the bouts I had with, say, Shawn Michaels or Davey Boy Smith.
Are you pleased it’s keeping your name alive?
Yeah, I meet a lot of youngsters who know who I am and tell me about my matches but it’s not from watching me – it’s from playing the video games. They play as me and even my sons tell me my character is pretty flawless. The guys who made the game must be big fans, so I appreciate that.
Surely you’d beat them up otherwise?
You still don’t expect stuff like that. I was always really proud of my abilities in the ring and for my character to be placed in an elite group as one of the toughest opponents in the game is a great compliment.
So many wrestlers with whom you shared a ring died young in controversial circumstances. Who do you miss the most?
I miss my brother Owen more than anybody but I shake my head in anger that so many of them are not around when they should be. Ravishing Rick Rude was a good friend and there’s no reason why he shouldn’t still be alive. Mr Perfect is another I wish I could call up. You could name one after another who have gone and I’ve missed them all.
You partnered, fought against, and at one point were brother-in-law to both the British Bulldogs. What are your best memories?
I had so many good memories of both the Dynamite Kid and Davey Boy Smith, but Dynamite especially. I learned a lot from him and when The Hart Foundation and the Bulldogs first got together in WWE, it was Dynamite and Davey who put the word out that I was a good wrestler. There were a lot of wrestlers trying hard to minimise what I could do in the ring but the Bulldogs were the first ones to really allow me to start doing great matches and I’m grateful for all of that.
Who was your greatest rival?
There was a happy rivalry with ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin in that he was a lot of fun to wrestle with, and I think I helped launch his career. But on the not so happy, the brilliant work I did with Shawn Michaels. You can never underestimate what we did at WrestleMania XII, even though it was the last match we had and part of the infamous Montreal Screwjob, it was still a fine match. I could have wrestled the Undertaker a few more hundred times as well.
The Montreal Screwjo’ was extremely controversial because of the outcome. How do you look back on it?
I’ve calmed down a lot. There were a lot of things I did to escalate that whole thing with [opponent] Shawn Michaels and [now WWE owner] Vince McMahon. I wouldn’t change anything I did in terms of my own conduct but I regret all of it. I wish I had never left the WWE but I’ve moved on. I went back and shook Shawn’s hand and it was good for everyone to bury the hatchet.
Will we ever see a British WWE world champion?
Oh I think so, there are a lot of good wrestlers coming out of the UK. Also, Swiss wrestler Antonio Cesaro is one of the best wrestlers going, if you ask me.
You once finished 39th in a poll of greatest Canadians – surely it hurts to have finished below Shania Twain?
Well, I beat Avril Lavigne, that’s the most important thing and Bryan Adams is kind of English – you guys took ownership of him, so he doesn’t count.
What’s your greatest achievment: wearing pink in the ring, appearing on The Simpsons, or that there’s a Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart Day in your home city of Calgary?
In years to come, I’ll still be featuring in re-runs of The Simpsons so that will probably end up being the greatest thing I ever did.
Great interview. All I gotta say is Taker vs Bret should’ve happened more times than it did. Every match they had together had some kind of controversy/interference of some kind. In their match at MSG in 1992, Taker used The Urn on Bret. At the 1996 Royal Rumble, Diesel interfered and at Summerslam 97, Shawn Michaels cost Taker the match. Had Bret stayed in WWE instead of going to WCW, Taker and Bret would’ve probably hooked up again, maybe more than once hopefully with no controversy or interference. They would’ve had a longer classic rivalry.