|Capital:||€ 15.2 million|
|Born:||March 24, 1965|
|Country of origin:||United States of America|
|Source of wealth:||actor|
The real name of the undertaker is Mark William Calaway. He gained fame for his decades-long role as the wrestler named Undertaker in World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE). He is one of the most famous wrestlers of all time and has won the most important WWE title seven times in his career.
Mark Calaway was born on March 24, 1965 in Houston Texas as one of five sons. During his school and college years, he intended to become a professional basketball player. He received a basketball scholarship and studied sports management. However, he broke off his studies and in 1984 he hired as a wrestler at the Promotion World Class Championship Wrestling. Between 1988 and 1990 he worked in a number of small wrestling promotions before finally moving to the then WWF (now WWE).
His famous undertaker gimmick was first introduced to the general public at the 1990 Survivor Series. After a short time he was given a sidekick in the shape of the alleged funeral director Paul Bearer. The Undertaker played the role of the silent and unstoppable wrestler, while Paul Bearer acted as his mouthpiece and heated the audience.
At the Survivor Series 1991, Undertaker finally managed to win Hulk Hogan’s WWF Champion title for the first time. From that point on, he developed into one of the greatest audience favorites. So far he mostly played a dark antagonist, his role was reworked into a grim baby face. In this form he had various feuds with the greatest wrestlers in the WWF in the ring.
While the Undertaker was mostly portrayed as a supernatural figure with special powers during its early years, it began to be presented more humanly in the second half of the 90s. Mark Calaway often took over the microphone himself. From 1997 he led a longstanding feud against the newly introduced wrestler Kane, who was introduced as the brother of the undertaker. The Undertaker was regularly involved in spectacular fights, in which he was locked in a coffin and “burned”. However, he always managed to come back and win the decisive duels.
Over time, the undertaker’s gimmick changed. Towards the end of the 90s, the character was again given supernatural powers as part of the Attitude Era and he led the so-called Ministry of Darkness, his own dark following. From 2000, Calaway’s role was transformed into that of a patriotic biker, the American Badass.
In 2004, Calaway returned to the ring as an undertaker after an injury break. In the following years he was involved in many prestigious battles and programs within the WWE. In addition to his gimmick and his title victories, he caused a stir with the so-called “streak”. He won his match against changing opponents at 21 consecutive WrestleManias, the largest annual show of the WWE. This one-time series ended on February 24, 2014 at WrestleMania XXX from Brock Lesnar.
Mark Calaway has suffered a number of protracted injuries throughout his career. In the last few years of his career, the signs of physical wear became increasingly noticeable. The Undertaker no longer performed regularly. His few fights a year were considered a rare attraction. On April 2, 2017, he played his alleged last match at WrestleMania 33. From 2018, however, he was seen again in isolated fights and still is today.
As an undertaker, Mark Calaway has had a number of great successes. In wrestling, the success in the ring is linked to the popularity of the wrestler among fans. The Undertaker is one of the most iconic and popular wrestlers of all time, whose name is also familiar to many people who otherwise have little to do with wrestling. In line with his importance for the WWE, his annual salary is the equivalent of an impressive EUR 2.3 million.
The Undertaker won the most important WWE title seven times. 1991, 1997, 1999 and 2002 this was the WWE Championship. He later won the 2009 World Heavyweight Championship in 2007 and 2008. He also won the World Tag Team Championship in 2001 with his partner Kane. His series of 21 victories at WrestleMania is unmatched.
In addition, Mark Calaway appeared in two films and two episodes of different television series.
“It’s time to see if your body can redeem the checks that your mouth has issued.”
“You’ll pay me a lot of money for kicking your ass.” (to Vince McMahon, owner of the WWE)
Mark Calaway advised aspiring wrestlers not to focus only on the physical aspect of the sport. It was even more important to trigger strong emotions in the audience. It doesn’t matter if people love or hate you as long as the wrestler can trigger a reaction. The worst thing is not when people hate you, but when you don’t care.