Meet the French Wrestler who Inspired Shrek
Shrek is loved worldwide as the loveable ogre trying to find his place in the world and of course for helplessly falling in love with Princess Fiona.
But what you probably don’t know is that Shrek’s appearance was inspired by a Russian-born Frenchman, Known formally as Maurice Tillet.
The man rose to prominence as a wrestling star in the 1930s and ‘40s.
Born in 1903, Tillet is said to have been called “angel” by his boyhood friends because of his blonde hair and angelic face. At the age of 17, however, doctors diagnosed Tillet with a hormonal disorder causes increased bone growth including in the hands, feet, and face.
Photos of Tillet following his acromegaly-induced growth spurt show a man who bears a striking resemblance to Shrek, the kindhearted ogre from the 2001 movie of the same name.
Despite the uncanny physical similarities between Tillet and Shrek, DreamWorks, the studio which released the film has never officially addressed the long-standing rumor that Tillet’s appearance served as the basis for the animated character.