Kane had one of the most memorable debuts of any WWE Superstar, interrupting Shawn Michael vs Undertaker at Badd Blood: In Your House in 1997.
Even so, few would have predicted that over the course of the next two decades he would become one of the most successful superstars of all time, achieving the WWE Grand Slam and appearing at 19 Wrestlemanias.
He took some time out from a busy schedule at the Middle East Film And Comic Con 2017 in Dubai to talk to Gulf News tabloid! about his storied career, whether Roman Reigns should be looking over his shoulder for the Big Red Machine, and his first steps into the world of politics.
“I’d like to say hello to all the great WWE fans here and in the Middle East. Having a great time, so hospitable and such great people, we really enjoy coming here,” he said.
When can we expect to see you back in the ring?
That is, as we say in the States, TBD, to be determined. And I wouldn’t want to ruin any surprises if I did know…
After what happened at WrestleMania [Roman Reigns retired the Undertaker], should Reigns be looking over his shoulder for the big red machine?
(Smiling) Well, Undertaker can take care of himself! We all knew at some point that was inevitable, but nevertheless it’s, sad because for me it’s like a chapter has closed, and I think a lot of WWE fans feel the same way.
You’ve been managed by some of the biggest names in the business during various parts of your career, including Paul Bearer, Jerry Lawler and Jim Cornette. Who’s your favourite?
Paul Bearer. Cos he’s my dad! But no, I owe a lot to Paul Bearer because when I came in he helped me learn the ropes. Being on the road we travel all the time of course, he helped me tremendously in that area, he didn’t have to do that but he did. So he took a lot of what would have been stress off of me so I could concentrate on doing the other things and I’m very grateful for that.
You’re running for mayor of Knox County, Tennessee. What’s tougher, a Hell in a Cell match or the world of politics?
Yeah! We’ll see! It may be a battle royal. I don’t know, we’ll see.
Of all the great young talent currently in the WWE and NXT, who stands out for you as a star of the future?
I don’t know, because that’s very hard to tell. NXT is a great product and certainly has already had a huge impact on our business. I mean guys like The Shield, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, all these guys who have come through. Samoa Joe of course is going to make a huge impact.
What’s great about NXT is you have a nice mix of guys new to the business in general, and then there are guys who are new to WWE but who are established names in the business. It’s very hard to say who will be the next great superstar. There’s a number of people who have the potential to do that.
Maybe one day we’ll see a top Superstar that’s from the UAE?
The great thing about WWE is we have become a truly global phenomenon, and just like here, everywhere we go we have fans. And now, because of that, we’re starting to attract talent from around the world, and all different parts of the world, and of course that’s great.
And it may sound weird for people to hear this, but we’re really global ambassadors, because we have a product people I think everyone enjoys and can relate to, and we bring people together which, on a larger scale, is not only very important to entertainment, but just very important for everything in general.
This isn’t your first time in the UAE. Do you plan to come back in the future to experience more of the country?
I’d love to. We travel so much in WWE that it’s very difficult for us to actually stay and see things. When we do come to the UAE we generally do stay for a few days and we get to do some really neat stuff. And it’s such a great place and the people here are so hospitable. It’s a place I’d like to come back and visit again when I have more time!