Thaddeus Kalinoski hit a rough patch in his life a while back, losing his job as a hotel manager and then losing his wife, so the Pennsylvania man decided to take a gamble and move to Las Vegas for a new career — a Zach Galifianakis impersonator.
Kalinoski realized he could pull off the look of the iconic character “Alan” from The Hangover, so he put on about 20 pounds and grew a beard. He charged $1,000 for private and corporate events, and quickly found that there was a huge market for his services.
Kalinoski is now making a quarter of a million dollars a year playing the comedian.
The Zach Galifianakis impersonator said he’s stopped all the time so tourists can take pictures with him.
“I picked up these sunglasses, absurdly huge and dark, and put them on in the parking lot. People just stared, and I figured it was because I looked like an escaped lunatic,” Kalinoski recently recalled, via Bro Bible. “I don’t remember the last time I paid for a drink,” he added, laughing. “I sit in VIP far too often for a dude who’s not actually famous.”
For Thaddeus Kalinoski, impersonating the Hangover character is doing more than filling his bank account. It’s also getting him in to some wild parties across Sin City.
“I still have to pinch myself that I actually make a living doing this,” he added to Daily Mail. “I have had some of the craziest nights out partying with people, and have laughed nonstop about the whole process — it’s the best thing that ever happened to me.”
But if Thaddeus Kalinoski wants to keep impersonating Zach Galifianakis he might need to make a few changes. The actor and comedian debuted a big weight loss in the fall, and showed up to the 2015 SAG Awards looking even slimmer.
In a 2013 interview, Zach explained that giving up drinking was the key to his weight loss.
“I stopped drinking and I just kind of put the weight off…I was having a lot of vodka with sausage…delicious but bad for you,” he explained. “I was getting into too much trouble with the drinking, so I just kind of stopped.”
Thaddeus Kalinoski will have to ride it out by playing the Zach Galifianakis character from The Hangover and hoping that the free-spirited Alan remains popular. The movie series is likely done after its third edition, so Thaddeus won’t have any new material to work with.
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