Fedor talks time he spent acting in Thailand, acting in general, his upcomingfight with Andrei Arlovski, whether he regrets his loss in combat sambo. Also he reveals how he's spending this New Year's Eve.
Did you like Thailand in general?
I'm not going back there again! (laughs) When you look at Bangkok: all you see is bars, sex-tourism prospers, alot of prostitutes and transvestites. It only disgusted me as an orthodox man.
Did you like to act in a movie?
To be honest, filming was tough for me. I had to change my lifestyle: I Didn't have time to train. You always have to wait when you need to do one take or the next. Although I liked the process itself. I made friends with the guys from the movie. Most of the time I would spend with Oleg Chernov and Valeriy Nikolaev. They're very athletic guys, all our spare time we would spend in the pool and played tennis and ping pong.
In the "Fifth execution" you're playing a Special Forces fighter (Spetsnaz), you were shooting all kinds of weapons... Did the Army remind you of that?
No, I did not serve in special forces. One year in firefighting division, and one year in tank division.
After coming back from the filming, Fedor resumed his training, which he missed in Thailand. Besides running many kilometers, he spends hours in a gym, practicing heavy hitting. He does sparring and wrestling matches with fellow countryman Kiril Sidelnikov, who's a European Combat Sambo Champion. Emelianenko is getting ready to fight Belarussian Andrei Arlovski, nicknamed Pitbull, which will happen January 24.
It will be the first time you meet with a slav...
Andrei lives in USA 8 years already, so I think he's Americanized by now! - he laughs. But in all honesty he's a very good fighter, used to be a world's champion. So I'm preparing very seriously.
You will fly out to this fight accompanied by priests?
I try to get a blessing before all important things, including my fights. God willing, my spiritual father Andrei Zinoviev will make the trip with me.
Can we ask an uncomfortable question.... Was the break in training, when you were in Thailand, the reason that you did not win a gold medal in the recent World Combat Sambo championship?
I clearly understood that I would not be able to fully prepare. And the fact that I won the Bronze, did not bother me one bit. Everyone else got upset, but not me. I prepare for Mixed Martial Arts primarily and with all seriousness, so I treat Combat Sambo a bit lighter. It's impossible to be in your optimal condition everywhere and to perform with maximum results all the time.
In the past years, you would have a traditional fight on New Years Eve in Japan. Will you do the same?
No, the Japanese could not organize a fight. Perhaps, next year it could happen.
How will you spend the New Years and what will you have on your Holiday table?
More than likely I'll just meet the new year with my friends and go to sleep. And I will have whatever is allowed for my Christmas fast, on the table.
Also, below the interview some interesting notes:
Currently, a TV filming crew from USA is staying in Stary Oskol. The filming group from a central American TV station is making a film about Emelianenko and Andrei Arlovski, about the upcoming fight and how the fighters are preparing for it. Our athlete is very popular overseas: locals love the kind russian fighter, who is alwasy smiling and never loses.
The film crew accompanied Fedor everywhere for a few days. With a camera mounted, cameraman Kevin Hewett ran after Fedor many kilometers in the winter forrest. After building up some smoke, the Americans shot scenes from the upcoming film in the gym of the local college, where Fedor would hit a Kamaz tire with a hammer (that's an exercise). The champion would work punching bags until they fell on the floor, or get ripped from the ceiling. The overseas guests were in awe, when Fedor would flex his huge muscles in front of the camera lenses. After taking off their shoes, cameramen would run after the champion in the gym, to try to catch that magic shot. They even went with Fedor to the sauna, and there in 100 degree temperature, they would film how Emelianenko recuperates after titanic training sessions. Americans even went to Stary Oskol's Holy Nikolskiy temple, to film how the fighter participates in the church sermon. They visited the keeper of the temple. They tasted Russian pelmeni in the local cafes, and were thrilled with a freshly made lamb dish. All in all, they worked and vacationed very happily.
Together with the film crew came the vice-president of an american organization of mixed martial arts Jerry Millen. We exchanged a few words with him.
- The film about your countryman will be seen by the whole America, including Barack Obama! - Said Jerry. We will be broadcasting this film on the main American TV Channel, on many satellite and cable channels and put it up on our website. USA has many fans of Fedor. I myself know him for six years and now came to Stary Oskol, to show the other side of his life. Because he is an incredible person, he still lives in a small town, many years he's training still with the same coaches. Fedor remained just as shy, as he was before his world fame.
Huge muscles? Too muck kool-aid?