Andy Kaufman’s wrestling career led to a fateful bout with Jerry Lawler

Andy Kaufman’s obscure wrestling career culminated in an iconic bout with Jerry Lawler, which has ultimately led to the late actor and WWE star being honored in the most heartfelt way.

Whilst Kaufman is best known for his acting career he also made his mark in the professional wrestling sphere. He was self-described as the “Inter-Gender Wrestling Champion of the World.”

The WWE wrestling star is set to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame class of 2023. This has left avid wrestling fans keen to know more about his extensive career.

Photo by Ebet Roberts/Redferns

Inside Andy Kaufman’s obscure wrestling career

For a long time, the World Wrestling Federation was cautious about bringing Kaufman’s act into the Pro Wrestling society.

However, Kaufman was friends with Wrestling magazine reporter, Bill Apter who introduced him to professional wrestler Jerry “The King” Lawler.

Following a challenge from Jerry “The King” Lawler, who appears on the WWE 2K23 roster list, Andy officially broke into the wrestling world.

Even though the wrestling matches were staged; they were vastly loved and this fact was not disclosed until more than 10 years after Kaufman’s death.

Andy Kaufman’s infamous bout with Jerry Lawler

After Andy famously offered money to “any woman who could pin him down” as part of his act; a viral feud between him and Jerry in the Continental Wrestling Association in Memphis, Tennessee, broke out.

Kaufman’s feud with his fellow WWE star, blurred the line between fiction and reality as Lawler and Kaufman were actually good friends. However, the duo cleverly convinced fans that they were arch nemeses’.

Kaufman claimed that Lawler even broke his neck after he performed a piledriver on him. For some time after that, he appeared in a neck brace. Many were suspicious as to whether the neck injury was real but officials at St. Francis Hospital allege that it was.

When the notorious duo appeared on Late Night with David Letterman their fake feud continued. As they handed out insults before Lawler slapped Kaufman, making him fall back off his chair.

Photo by Joan Adlen/Getty Images

Andy Kaufman’s tragic death

Despite being a nonsmoker, Andy tragically died from lung cancer in 1984 at the age of 35.

Kaufman’s work with Lawler was a poignant part of his storyline in Man On The Moon, and no, we don’t mean Kid Cudi’s album. Man On The Moon was Kaufman’s biopic which starred Jim Carrey as Andy. The film also saw Lawler and Letterman appear as themselves in the spectacle.

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