Jonny Sarhanis is a reality TV and viral video sensation. Having grown up with him in a small town on Cape Cod, I’ve seen his rise first-hand and knew he would have plenty to say about finally breaking through. Jonny has always wanted to be famous and he was never going to let anything get in his way. From an appearance on Judge Judy to his career as a California state arm-wrestling champion, Jonny has always stayed true to himself and his, shall we say, unique sense of humor. That sense of humor is inspiried, if not fueled by, his lifelong alter-ego to which he referrs as, “The Animal.” The Animal came out during his Ton of Cash and the clip has become a YouTube smash hit, with nearly 1,000,000 views and still climbing. It didn’t hurt that Kimmel, Talk Soup and an army of websites also ran the clip, too. So I called my friend to have a chat and I tried to keep it as professional as I could.
How long have you done The Animal and what’s the typical reaction from people?
I started doing The Animal when I was about 13 just to make my friends laugh. I guess Michael Jackson’s Thriller video and Michael J. Fox in Teen Wolf were the inspirations. I would look at my Greek physique in the mirror, and, one day, I put my face real close and made it tight and made the veins stick out and I was like, “wow, that’s kind of scary.” People have always thought it was funny. If they don’t know me, they’re usually blown away and don’t know how to react. Some people are scared, but if you know me, you know I’m a funny dude and you’ll think it’s funny.
Have you always been the class clown?
Yeah, always, but taken to another level. I used to smoke cigarettes in my college classrooms. I’ve mooned my classmates. In high school I ran for class president just to make people laugh (he lip-synced “Johnny Be Good” like in Back to the Future). I’ve streaked across football fields.
Your YouTube video is nearing one million views and has been seen on Jimmy Kimmel Live and Talk Soup, as well as many popular internet sites like Zimbio, The Huffington Post, dlisted and Buzzfeed. How does it feel to be famous?
I‘ve been famous all my life. Maybe not in Hollywood, but if they give me the chance, I will put the “wood” in “Hollywood.”
What’s your reaction to people who are commenting you’re on steroids?
I’ve never done a steroid in my life. Steroids are for pussies as far as I’m concerned. I have a body like one of those Greek statues. You know, the ones with the dick cut off? Just call me “The Greek Mystique with the Greek physique.”
How will the video of ‘The Animal” going viral change your reality TV career?
Well, with The Animal going viral I’m expecting the entire world to know who “The Greek Mystique” is. Who knows? I’d love to have my own show.
You work out a lot and are very tan, which has spawned some Jersey Shore comparisons? What’s your take?
I’m not aware of any comparisons to The Jersey Shore. I’ve never seen that show, but the guys on the show definitely are not ripped. I’ve been on an all-weed diet and let me tell you: it gets you ripped.
Would you do The Animal at appearances for money?
Yes, because I’ve been doing it my whole life and it’s time I get paid for it. I think I could do club appearances or endorsements like the old Macho Man Slim Jim commercials.
Does it hurt to do The Animal?
I can’t really control The Animal. It has a mind of its own. When he wants to surface, I can’t stop him from coming out. It takes over my entire body. The Animal came out on (Ton of Cash) because I was upset I lost to Chucky B. and was going home. So when I get angry, The Animal can come out and it popped off on national TV. I’m just glad my head didn’t pop off.
How do you answer the question: what do you do?
I dont do anything as far as a day job goes. I’ve been in L.A. for ten years and never really got a shot. I moved out from Cape Cod to act. I quit my last job at The Standard hotel in 2010 and auditioned for Big Brother 12. They chose me to be on the show and we were supposed to start shooting, but I got sick and couldn’t be on it. So I was depressed. But, then again, nobody’s ever really blown up from Big Brother so it wasn’t meant to be. I was happy to be on Ton of Cash though. They chose one guy and girl from LA. I was the guy and I was glad I got it and not Big Bro because I got to live out my dream to be on national TV and do The Animal.
Tell us briefly about your arm-wrestling career.
My arm is so strong, when I spank I have to be careful I don’t rip my dick off. Seriously though, I’m a five-time California state champion.
If you could do The Animal for someone famous, who would it be?
Maybe Emmy Rossum because I just think she’s beautiful, but I wouldn’t want to scare her. I think Lou Ferrigno would appreciate it.
Do you have a girlfriend?
I don’t think one woman could satisfy “The Greek Mystique” to be honest with you. I need a woman who can stimulate my mind and dick, then I won’t go looking elsewhere for it. But, in the big picture, who would want to marry “The Greek Mystique” anyways? Chicks need flowers, vacations, jewelry, kids and all I want to do is bone forever. I don’t do kids. I don’t do marriage and I don’t play house!!
Do you use The Animal to impress women?
Lets just say I’m a real animal in the sack.
Who are your heroes?
Tom Brady and Rocky Balboa
Who would you want to play you in a film about your life?
When you’re mega-famous and get your own celebrity fragrance, what will you call it?
“The Greek Mystique”
How would you address your fans?
I would just say, “thank you.” I’m glad people love it. I’m not surprised by it. I’ve been doing it for twenty years and everyone has always responded well to it so it makes sense America loves it too. I hope I can perform it again soon on TV. “COPY THAT!”