The Associated Press
TUNICA, Miss. (AP) — It’s safe to say that wrestler will turn heads Saturday when he heads to Tunica for the opening of a museum in his honor. He’ll be driving the Batmobile — well, a replica of it anyway.
Lawler, who describes himself as a big Batman fan, tells The Commercial Appeal (http://bit.ly/1c0C4kZ) that he took delivery of the replica on Wednesday.
On Saturday, he’ll preside over the opening of the Jerry Lawler Museum at Resorts Casino in Tunica.
Lawler prefers not to say how much he paid for his newest ride, only that it was “considerably less” than the $4.6 million that the original sold for to a private buyer at auction in January.
What he will say is that the full-size replica is drivable, so that’s what Lawler plans to do Saturday — drive it to Tunica for the opening of his museum.
And in a way, there’s a connection between the two.
“It sort of all comes full circle,” Lawler explains. “I’ve always been a huge fan of Batman and Superman; I even sought out a girlfriend who had a color TV so I could watch Batman in color in the ’60s.
“With my interest in art as a kid, I can remember drawing Superman and Batman, and my long-range plan was to work for DC Comics. But then I got sidetracked doing some drawings of wrestlers, and that led to my career in wrestling. In that role, I was at a fan expo signing autographs and met Matt Dollar, a guy from Johnson City, Tenn., who has built several replicas of the Batmobile. He makes the capes, cowls and other things that Adam West (TV’s Batman) still uses at appearances. So because of the wrestling, I met Matt and now have the Batmobile.”
The delivery of the Batmobile, and the opening of the museum, has made for an exciting week for Lawler.
The museum, filled with memorabilia from Lawler’s 43 years of professional wrestling, is in an open area on the second floor of the casino and will be free to visitors. Terms of the agreement call for Lawler to appear for two hours once a month to sign autographs.
For Saturday’s official opening, with a ribbon-cutting planned for 1:30 p.m., Lawler will appear from 2 to 4 p.m.
“It’s everything,” Lawler said of the display. “It’s my ring gear, robes, jackets, crowns, championship belts, my WWE Hall of Fame ring and tons of pictures.”