Rikishi Shoot Interview

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One of wrestling’s most well known and traveled stars sat down with RF VIDEO to conduct an exclusive shoot interview that covered every facet of his long career. Rikishi, well known to WWE and TNA fans, walked us through a life that included growing up in a wrestling family and working several high profile territories such as World Class and the USWA before getting his big break as part of the well remembered Samoan Swat Team in the NWA. The son of Wild Samoan Siki and the cousin of Samu, Rikishi described exactly what it was like to be a second generation wrestler along with the obstacles he had to face when breaking into the business.

After spending a good amount of time in the NWA, Rikishi was able to tell us a ton of great road stories that included such people as Paul Heyman and the Steiner Brothers. He also opened up about what it was like being in the locker room with so many legendary wrestlers and specifically described how Ric Flair was obsessively into his Nature Boy character. All the major feuds that the S.S.T. were in get their due here, including the classic brawls with the Road Warriors, the Midnight Express, the Steiners, and Dr.Death Steve Williams. We even got ‘Keesh to talk about the Dynamic Dudes!

Once inside the WWE, Rikishi got stuck with one lame gimmick after another and we got him to tell us what is was like working as the Sultan and the ridiculous “inspirational” street member. Eventually he was given the character of Rikishi and we discussed all the major angles and people he worked with along with what was going on in the locker room and on the road. You’ll get stories talking about the Hardy Boyz, the Rock, Steve Austin, Vince McMahon, Too Cool, Undertaker, Kane, Edge, John Cena, and many more. You’ll find out why Rikishi had heat with Jim Ross and what ‘Keesh really thinks of Johnny Ace. In fact, Rikishi used this opportunity to send a message to Ace!

Just a wonderful interview that even covered Rikishi’s brief run in TNA. Fans of WWE will love this DVD as it has so many stories featuring all the top guys, but you’ll also hear about a ton of other notable guys including Bruiser Brody, the Von Erichs, Eric Embry, Jerry Jarrett, Michael Hayes, Jim Herd, Oliver Humperdink, Lex Luger, Sting, Owen Hart, Mil Mascares, Scott Hall, Kevin Nash, Shawn Michaels, and Triple H. Are the rumors true that Rikishi would use a smelly pair of tights when delivering the stink face to certain wrestlers? How much did The Cliq affect his career? Who was the person who came up with the leap off the cage against Val Venus? Was it always the plan for Rikishi to be the one who ran down Steve Austin? You’ll get the answers to all of these questions and a whole lot more in this amazing new shoot!

Memories of growing up in a wrestling family
How soon did you know you wanted to be a wrestler
Who trained you
What do you remember about your brother’s success in the WWF
How open about the business were your Uncles growing up
Is it true you were a street dancer as a kid
Is it true you were involved in a drive-by shooting
What was the hardest thing about training
Is it true that you wrestled your first match in a battle royal
Memories of wrestling for Gino Brito in Canada
Thoughts on Dino Bravo
Was it a good place to learn
Did any of the vets test you
Memories early on about teaming with Samu
How helpful was it to get into the business already teaming with a vet
Memories of your early Puerto Rico tours
Was it a hostile environment after the Brody murder
How did you wind up in World Class
Who was the booker at the time
Memories of matches with the Von Erichs
Were they hard to work with
Any good road stories
Memories of Fritz
Memories of Buddy Roberts, good road stories
How did things change when Jerry Jarrett bought into it
Thoughts on Eric Embry
Thoughts on when Lawler came in
Memories of the USWA vs. WCCW feud
Memories of matches with Michael Hayes and Steve Cox
Memories of Superclash III
Did you look at as an audition for one of the big 2
Do you remember Kerry cutting himself
How did you wind up in WCW
Memories of Paul Heyman
Any good Paul Heyman stories
Are you surprised at his success as a booker
Memories of matches with the Midnight Express
Memories of Ric Flair
Thoughts on Jim Herd
Why the switch from Paul to Humperdink
Memories of matches with the Dynamic Dudes
Memories of matches with the Road Warriors
Were they hard to work with since you guys were all big and they didn’t like to sell
Memories of matches with the Steiners
Memories of matches with Steve Williams
How did your brother Tonga get into the mix
Was it hard being on the road with your brother
Memories of Sting
Memories of Lex Luger
Why did you wind up leaving WCW
Was it hard adjusting to the indys
Was it hard to make a living on the indys
Did you ever think about quitting
Memories of your first Japanese tours
Memories of working in the UWA with Yoko
Memories of wrestling Mil Mascaras
How did you wind up in the WWF
Initial impressions of Vince McMahon
Who’s idea was it to get your Uncle into the mix
How valuable was it to have him with you every night
Memories of the locker room and how well you were received
Did you feel a lot of pressure coming from a wrestling family
Memories of your first matches on house shows
Did anyone rib you early on
Memories of matches with the Natural Disasters
Memories of matches with High Energy
Did you and Samu ever argue over matches, finishes, etc
Was he a good traveling partner
Memories of matches with the Smoking Guns
When Vince was on trial were there ever any fears that the WWF would go under
Whos idea was it to add Lou Albano to the mix
Do you think he was too old at the time
Thoughts on the Clique and the influence they had on business at the time
How did things change when Hall and Nash left
How big was it for you to get the tag belts
How crazy was the road schedule
Was there a reason you guys wound up dropping the belts to Shawn and Diesel out of nowhere?
Why do you think you didn’t get much of a push when you came back as the new Headshrinkers
Who’s idea was it give you a singles push
Were you nervous
Did you like the inspirational street gimmick you had
Why was the feud with the Samoan Gangster Party dropped so quick
Why did they change the gimmick to the Sultan
How did the idea come about
You must have some great Iron Sheik stories
What do you make of him today
Any good Bob Backlund stories
Is it true when you came into the WWF early on that you and Vince had visions of a Sumo gimmick
Was it hard adjusting to wrestling with a mask
Memories of your matches with a young Rocky Maivia
Did you think he would be successful later on
Why was the gimmick dropped
Why did you wind up leaving
Did you leave on good terms
Did you like the indys at the time
Could you make a good living
How did you wind up coming back
Who’s idea was the Rikishi character
How had things changed in the WWE as opposed to the last time you were there
How important do you think your match was with Triple H on Smackdown right after he won the belt
How did you wind up with Too Cool
Is it true that you had a smelly pair of tights youd use on certain people when giving them the stink face
Who got the nasty tights
Any good Brian Christopher stories
Memories of matches with the Radicalz
Thoughts on Chris Benoit and the whole tragedy
Memories of Eddie Guerrero
Memories of matches with Kurt Angle
Memories of matches with Edge
Memories of matches with Tazz
Who’s idea was it for your leap off of the cage against Val Venis
How hard was it on your knees
Did you have any problems selling for Chyna
Thoughts on Chyna today
One of your biggest angles was the one with Austin. Was the plan for you all along as it was rumored to be Billy Gunn for awhile
Memories of the feud
Triple H was added to the story, was that a change or something planned from the start
Do you think you and Austin alone could have done more business
How different was wrestling the Rock years later
Memories of your match at Hell in the Cell. How concerned were you about the cage giving out
How did you wind up teaming with Haku
Memories of matches against Undertaker and Kane
Did you think it was unfair to constantly read about yourself in the Ross Report
Why do you think you became so injury prone in 2001
Did you feel pressure from Vince for missing so much time
Where do you think you and Haku could have gone if you never missed any time
Memories of giving Vince the stink face
How did you come up with the stink face
Was he a good sport
Memories of matches with John Cena
Did you think he would be as big as success as he has become
Memories of the whole Sean O Haire and Roddy Piper feud
How different was Hogan when he came back
Did Hogan try and be one of the boys or did he still feel as if he was the Hulk Hogan of the 1980s
Did the WWE try and pressure you to lose weight
Did you never want to make the commitment to losing weight or were you afraid of losing your spot
Are you scared of dying young
How did you wind up leaving
Have you ever been contacted to come back either fulltime or for a one time deal
How did you find out you could no longer call yourself Rikishi
How did you feel about it
Your weight has went up and down throughout your career, why is that
How did Nu-Wrestling come about
How big was wrestling in Italy
Why did you stop promoting
Why do you think it didn’t pan out
Memories of going back to Japan and wrestling Muto
How did you wind up in TNA
Thoughts on TNA
Thoughts on Vince Russo
It was reported that you tried holding them up for more money after you signed a contract, is that true
How do you feel when you hear people in TNA management say that you had a poor attitude
Thoughts on Samoa Joe
What happened when you were arrested two years ago
Were you embarrassed
Any good road stories, ribs
Have you ever refused to do a job and if so why
Any regrets
Fav and least favorite matches
Thoughts on the current WWE and TNA products
Do you see yourself with another WWE run?
What do you think is lacking on the indys today
Do you ever want to write a book