It is a sad day for the world. The man’s man who earned a cult following as the Most Interesting Man in the World is drinking his last Dos Equis and retiring in style.
Born in New York City, the 77-year-old drove a garbage truck and worked in construction while trying to get a start in acting. He finally got his big break starring in Westerns opposite John Wayne in “The Shootist” and Clint Eastwood in “Hang ‘Em High,” where he learned that lying about riding horses to get the job was easy. Riding them, not so much. “It wasn’t easy,” Goldsmith told NPR. “Jewish boys that grow up in New York are not that adept at riding horses.”
A long career in minor roles and guest-starring stints followed, even an unnamed role on “Star Trek” standing in the background as a shirtless William Shatner sashayed by.
But it was the 2006 role of the Most Interesting Man in the World that changed his life, allowed him to finally stretch his comedic muscles and made him an overnight success 50 years after he first got into acting.
Walking into the audition, the line was out into the street with Latin American men. Thinking quickly, Goldsmith put on an accent imitating Argentine-actor and old sailing buddy Fernando Lamas. When auditioners were asked to improvise and end with the line “…and that’s how I arm wrestled Fidel Castro,” Goldsmith removed one sock and improvised for 30 minutes before ending with the line, clinching the role that would change his life. By 2009, Dos Equis sales were up by 17%.
Some interesting — and real — facts about Goldsmith, the man behind the legend:
He lives in southern Vermont with his wife Barbara.
He lived on a sailboat for four years in Marina del Rey, California.
He once rescued a man on Mount Whitney in the Sierra Mountains during a blizzard.
If that wasn’t enough, he also saved a girl from drowning in Malibu, California.
He is heavily involved in charities advocating landmine removal, he is also involved with the Morris Animal Foundation and their efforts to prevent and cure cancer in dogs and with the S.A.B.R.E Foundation,and their mission to protect and preserve the Siberian tiger.
Last fall, Goldsmith invited Business Insider into his home for a peek into a day in his life.
And of course, any article about the Dos Equis guy would be remiss without some “facts” about the legend Goldsmith created:
When he drives a car off the lot, its price increases in value.
He once went to the psychic, to warn her.
He can speak Russian … in French.
He once brought a knife to a gunfight … just to even the odds.
When he meets the Pope, the Pope kisses his ring.
His signature won a Pulitzer.
Sharks have a week dedicated to him.
He once made a weeping willow laugh.
The Holy Grail is looking for him.
Roses stop to smell him.
He once had an awkward moment, just to see how it feels.
Mosquitoes refuse to bite him purely out of respect.
Two countries went to war to dispute HIS nationality.
His mother has a tattoo that says “Son.”
If he was to pat you on the back, you would list it on your resume.
And of course, with the Internet being the Internet, he would be nothing without the memes:
We couldn’t help ourselves:
Stay thirsty, my friends.