Where Are They Now? WWF Superstars

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Mickey Rourke may win an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as the past-his-prime Randy "The Ram" Robinson in The Wrestler, but what became of all the real-life wrestlers who entertained you as a kid? A depressingly high number of former stars have passed away, and many more continue on in wrestling in some capacity. Others, though, have drifted away from the business and started new lives free of choreographed violence. Here are a few of our favorites.

1. Nikolai Volkoff

Talk about life not imitating art. Volkoff, the WWF's premier Russian boogeyman throughout the 80s, spent his wrestling career decrying democracy. Then he became a Republican. The Yugoslavian-born Volkoff became a code inspector for Baltimore County following his retirement, and he even ran unsuccessfully in a Republican primary for Maryland's State House of Delegates in 2006. Perhaps voters didn't latch onto his anger at the cost of living; in a 2006 interview with Fox News he complained about once being able to spend "$2 for 20 cans of sardines, and now $5 will get you only six cans."

2. Abdullah the Butcher

The Madman from Sudan, who was actually a Canadian-born fellow named Larry Shreve, has had some success as a restaurateur since his retirement. If you're ever in Atlanta, you can stop by Abdullah the Butcher's House of Ribs and Chinese Food. If you're lucky, he won't even stab you in the forehead with his trademark fork!

3. Hillbilly Jim

If you've got a Sirius satellite radio, you can still hear Hillbilly Jim every Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm ET when the company's Outlaw Country station airs "Hillbilly Jim's Moonshine Matinee," a program where Jim spins country and Southern rock and chats about his life in the ring.

4. King Kong Bundy

Andre the Giant's former rival isn't totally retired from wrestling, and he's got another way into the limelight: standup comedy. Yes, really. His MySpace page says he's still available for bookings as either a wrestler or a comic. See for yourself.

5. Mr. Fuji

Mr. Fuji, the villainous manager of wrestlers like Yokozuna, was never afraid to toss salt in an opponent's eyes. He's a bit more subdued these days. Apparently he works as an usher and ticket taker for a movie theater near Knoxville, and also reviews movies for the WWE's magazine.

6. Lanny Poffo

Leaping Lanny Poffo, "Macho Man" Randy Savage's poet brother, wasn't just playing to his gimmick when he recited verse in the ring. He really likes poetry that much. He's released two books of poetry, including 2004's Limericks from the Heart (and Lungs!), a collection of 335 anti-smoking limericks.

7. Papa Shango/The Godfather

Charles Wright's WWF gimmick changed a few times, from witch doctor Papa Shango to ho-escorted "˜70s pimp The Godfather. That second gimmick may have helped him in his post-wrestling gig: strip club manager. After retiring from wrestling in 2002, Wright took over managing Cheetah's, a Las Vegas gentleman's club best known for providing shooting locations for the film Showgirls.

8. Tully Blanchard

Blanchard, a founding member of the NWA and WCW's Four Horsemen stable, became a born-again Christian in 1989. Although he's worked for the WWE as a road agent, he's now spending most of his time on his evangelical prison ministry.

9. Koko B. Ware

The WWF's resident Birdman now lives in Memphis with his family. His beloved macaw, Frankie, died in a house fire in 2001, but Koko bounced back with a new bird, Frankie Jr., that accompanies him to the ring when he makes appearances.

10. Rick Steiner

The Dog-Faced Gremlin can sell you a house! After his semi-retirement from the ring, Steiner became a realtor. His website promises that he's "Wrestling Real Estate for YOU" and everything. If I'm looking for a house in Cherokee, Cobb, or Pickens County, Georgia, I know who I'm calling. I'm also refusing to close until he lets me assist him in landing a Steinerizer.

11. The Ultimate Warrior

Remember how the Ultimate Warrior seemed just a little unhinged in the ring? It might have been more than just a stellar acting job. Although he was born Jim Hellwig, the wrestler realized in 1993 that he was in danger of losing his ring name if he left the WWF. His solution? Legally changing his name to "Warrior." That's it. He's just "Warrior" on his driver's license.

Although he largely retired from wrestling in 1999, Warrior has remained in the public eye as a virulently right-wing commentator who until last year frequently updated his blog, "Warrior's Machete," with all manner of ultra-conservative opinions.

12. The Iron Sheik

The venerable Iranian heel has found a new niche for himself, courtesy of Howard Stern. After the Sheik became a topic of conversation on Stern's show, he started making regular appearances on the radio program in 2007. He's made comedy show appearances as part of Stern's entourage, and has supposedly developed an hour-long radio show for Sirius Satellite Radio's Howard 101.

The Super Mario Bros. Theme Song Has Lyrics You've Probably Never Heard

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Anyone who owned a Nintendo Entertainment System as a kid likely has the Super Mario Bros. theme song committed to memory—or at least part of it, anyway. In 1985, Nintendo confirmed that the iconic, 8-bit tune has official lyrics that most fans of the video game have never heard.

According to Nerdist, the Mario song didn't have lyrics originally. Super Mario Bros. debuted to the world in 1985, and everything about the game's hero, including his poppy theme music composed by Koji Kondo, became a sensation. Shortly after its release, a Japanese radio station called on fans to submit lyrics to go with the catchy score. Nintendo saw one of the submissions and was so impressed that it decided to record the lyrics to music and release the song on vinyl.

In English, the song opens “Today, full of energy, Mario is still running, running / Go save Princess Peach! Go!" Characters and creatures from the Mario universe, like Goomba, Lakitu, and Cheep Cheep, are all name-dropped.

After reading the full lyrics, you can listen to the recorded version above, which sounds a lot catchier in the original Japanese.

Today, full of energy, Mario is still running, running
Go save Princess Peach! Go!
Today, full of energy, Mario runs
Today, full of energy, jumping!
Today, full of energy, searching for coins
Today, keep going, Mario!
Get a mushroom—it’s Super Mario!
Get a flower—it’s Fire Mario!
Goomba! Troopa! Buzzy Beetle! Beat them all!
Mario is always full of energy and strong!

Today, full of energy, Mario is still running, running
Go and beat the Koopa tribe, go!
Today, full of energy, Mario runs
Today, full of energy, jumping!
Today, full of energy, searching for coins
Today, keep going, Mario!
Get a star—become invincible!
Quickly, go save Princess Peach!
Lakitu! Blooper! Cheep Cheep! Beat them all!
Mario is always full of energy and strong!

Today, full of energy, Mario is still running, running
He’s made it to the castle and gets fireworks!
Lightly sidestepping the Hammer Bros.
Show the last of your power, Mario!
It’s been a long journey but it’s nearly at an end
You’ve done it, you’ve done it! You’ve defeated Bowser!
Princess Peach says “thank you”
Mario’s got a great big heart!
Mario’s adventure is over for now, but
Mario’s dream lives forever ...

[h/t Nerdist]

My Neighbor Totoro Is Returning to the Big Screen This Fall

© 1988 Studio Ghibli
© 1988 Studio Ghibli

Fans of Studio Ghibli’s 1988 animated film My Neighbor Totoro will have a few more chances to see this enchanting childhood tale unfold on the big screen. The Japanese movie, which follows two sisters as they explore a forest filled with fantastical creatures, will be showing at select theaters for three days in late September and early October, The A.V. Club reports.

The special event commemorates the 30th anniversary of My Neighbor Totoro, which was the first film by director and animator Hayao Miyazaki that many Americans ever saw. In his four-star review of the film, critic Roger Ebert wrote, “Here is a children's film made for the world we should live in, rather than the one we occupy. A film with no villains. No fight scenes. No evil adults. No fighting between the two kids. No scary monsters. No darkness before the dawn. A world that is benign. A world where if you meet a strange towering creature in the forest, you curl up on its tummy and have a nap.”

The film’s theatrical re-release is part of the ongoing Studio Ghibli Fest 2018, organized by GKIDS and Fathom Events. Nine films from Studio Ghibli are being presented in theaters throughout the year.

Two other Miyazaki classics will be returning to cinemas later this year: Spirited Away (2001) will be back in theaters October 28-30, and Castle in the Sky (1986) returns to theaters November 18-20. As for My Neighbor Totoro, dubbed versions of the film (with Dakota and Elle Fanning voicing the sisters) will be showing on September 30 and October 3, and the original Japanese version (with English subtitles) will be showing on October 1.

To find the nearest cinema showing My Neighbor Totoro, visit the Fathom Events website.

[h/t The A.V. Club]

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