David Michael Bautista Jr. was born in Washington, D.C. on January 18, 1969. Bautista stated in his 2007 book Batista Unleashed that D.C. was one of the poorest places in the country during the 1960s, 70s and 80s. Though his father was born in Washington, D.C., his family was from the Philippines.
His mother, Donna Raye was from a Greek family, and father, Dave Bautista Sr., from a filipino background. His grandfather had many different jobs in D.C., but Batista mainly remembered him as a barber. He died in 1988 when Batista was 19.
Batista moved to San Francisco with his mother, who split with his father despite multiple attempts to reconcile their marriage that occurred right out of high school. He often skipped school and getting in much trouble, even getting arrested for petty crimes.
Batista’s troubles led to his mother removing him from her home to move with his father, who was living in suburban Arlington, Virginia. His father would remarry and wanted Batista to move back with his mother. This did not happen, and instead he moved in with a friend in Arlington.
Unfortunately, due to his family instability and bad decisions in school, Batista dropped out of high school.
Batista became estranged from both his parents at the age of 17, and spent time working as a nightclub bouncer. While finding steady work as a bouncer, he was arrested one night and charged with assault and battery after getting physical with two rowdy patrons. He received one year of probation, which spawned his interest in endeavoring a career in pro wrestling after aspiring to be a successful bodybuilder.
As a kid, Batista watched a little bit of pro wrestling, and his favorite wrestler in the World Wrestling Federation was The Warlord. One of his least favorite wrestlers was “Mr. Perfect” Curt Hennig, who Batista admitted that he did not like because he was such a really good bay guy (heel). After training at Afa of the Wild Samoans’ training school in Allentown, Pennsylvania.
Pro Wrestling Career
In 1999, at the age of 30, he made his debut as a professional wrestler under the name of Khan for Afa’s World Xtreme Wrestling promotion. After a few matches, he joined Ohio Valley Wrestling as Leviathan, and picked up a big win against The Big Show less than a year after his debut, and also picked up a big win against Brock Lesnar during his stint.
His OVW success led to a debut as Deacon Batista on SmackDown in May of 2002, defeating Hugh Morrus before making a shift to the Raw brand later in 2002. At this point, his ring name was changed to Batista, which is a play off of his real last name, Bautista.
During his full-time professional wrestling stint in the WWE from 2002-2010, Batista became a six-time world champion – four reigns with the World Heavyweight Championship and two reigns with the WWE Championship – as well as a three reigns with the WWE Tag Team Championship.
In 2005, Batista won the Royal Rumble match by eliminating John Cena. This propelled a babyface turn against Triple H, which led to his first run as World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania 21. Before his babyface turn, Batista was a part of the Evolution stable with Triple H, Ric Flair, and Randy Orton.
In addition to his feuds with Triple H, Batista — nicknamed “The Animal” in WWE — also had a notable feud with The Undertaker, competing against him at the WrestleMania 23 pay-per-view.
After leaving WWE full-time, Batista became a successful American actor, appearing in films such as Riddick, Wrong Side of Town, Guardians of the Galaxy, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, The Man with the Iron Fists and Blade Runner 2049. His prominent roles came as Drax the Destroyer in Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War, James Bond foe Mr. Jinx in Spectre, among several more to come
His 2019 films include once again filling the role of Drax the Destroyer, but in the Avengers: Endgame movie, and the role of Vic in the action comedy film Stuber. He is also starring in films scheduled for a late-2019 and early 2020 release, which are Escape Plan: The Extractors, My Spy, and Dune.
What is Dave Bautista’s Net Worth?
From the compilation of his successful pro wrestling tenure and career in Hollywood, Batista’s net worth is around $13 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Although he did not fully pursue a career in bodybuilding, and he only had one MMA fight — a TKO win against Vince Lucero in 2012 — he used a second chance from a troubled past to become a six-time world champion and star in over 25 films.
Batista is the father of three children, Keilani, Athena, and Oliver. His two daughters are from his first marriage with Glenda, and son from his second marriage with Angie. Batista’s third marriage is with 31-year-old professional dancer Sarah Jade.