A giant former road worker from India who has become an international wrestling sensation is now a star in his homeland too and soon people will see The Great Khali in Bollywood flicks.
The Atlanta-based Dalip Singh Rana, who hails from Himachal Pradesh, stands over 7ft 3 in tall and weighs nearly 200kg. Nicknamed the "Great Khali", Rana is a top draw at the hugely popular World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). He is the first Indian to be signed up by WWE, and enjoys top billing in the famous American showbiz circus alongside fighters such as Hulk Hogan and The Rock.
Like many WWE stars - such as The Rock, aka Dwayne Douglas Johnson - Khali has done a few odd Hollywood roles, including a 2005 film called The Longest Yard.
On the set of another film, called Get Smart, the wrestler surprised Hollywood actor Steve Carell. "Literally, you shake his hand and you are shaking the inner part of his palm. He could put his hand over your entire head and crush you," Carell told a reporter later.
Rana got his nick name The Great Khali from the war cry he utters in his wrestling bouts.He says the Indian Godess Kali which has been distorted in Khali and hence the nick name.
With some Hollywood work under his belt, Khali is now looking at offers from Bollywood.
Khali has jumped on the bandwagon of international artistes who are swarming to India and making it big in Bollywood.The wrestler will make his Bollywood debut with Sahil Khan’s ‘Rama – The Saviour’. And interestingly the wrestler has charged Rs. 2 crore for his shoot which extends only upto four days.
After signing his debut film, it is believed that Khali has increased his fees to Rs.1 crore per day’s shoot. If this is true, then it means that Khali has ahead of SRK and Amitabh Bachhan to become Bollywood’s highest paid actor.
Meanwhile, Khali’s other project is with director David Dhawan for an untitled film that will also star John Abraham. For his Indian fans who haven’t been able to get their due share of the wrestler, Khali will also be seen in ‘Khusti’, a Venus production and an Ashtavinayak flick that will be directed by Neeraj Vohra.
With four projects already lined up and many more offers pouring in, Bollywood might soon become a second home for the wrestler.
Khali says he is a vegetarian and abhors alcohol and tobacco. He says he lives a "simple life" with his homemaker wife Harminder Kaur .
Khali have no complaints as his popularity is now soaring in his homeland. "Great Khali" is going to soak in all the attention and fame now coming his way in the land of his birth.