RW: That was the last time I wrestled in a film and the first team I had wrestled since high school.
DP: If you could make a sports movie, what would it be about?
RW: Abebe Bikila, the great Ethiopian runner. He won [a gold medal in the 1960 Olympics, when adidas sponsored the competition]. Because he ran barefoot, he carried the shoes. He was amazing.
DP: Is performing live like performing live in sports?
RW: Very much so. Chris Rock said it best: It's like boxing. You've got to train. It's one-on-one—a boxing match with you and them. It's almost like extreme fighting except it's verbal. Especially if you get a combative audience, it's Roman on that level.
DP: When you're in a movie, how much is acting and how much is you?
RW: I was trained as an actor, so you can have both. A little of me and also the character. A woman once walked up to me in the airport and said, "Be zany." It's like walking up to Mikhail Baryshnikov and saying, "Dance."
DP: Tony Gwynn used to watch all his at bats on tape and analyze them. Do you do that with acting?
RW: I can't look at myself. Even in the mirror it's a rough call. I focus on the wrong things. Is that nostril hair?
DP: How do you act at a San Francisco Giants game?