Schwarzenegger was attending the Arnold Classic Africa Festival in Sandton, when he was attacked by an angry black man over a car. The attacker launched a high kick to the Terminator’s upper back, causing him to stumble into the crowd.
Some 90 different sports were represented at the event, now in its fourth year, featuring 24 000 athletes of all ages and abilities. It takes place every May and features a range of sporting disciplines including bodybuilding and combat sports.
The video of the attack has generated hundreds of tweets and at least 8 million views on YouTube. While shouting at Arnold, the attacker was removed from the Sandton Convention Centre by security guards. He was shouting “Help me! I need a Lamborghini!” as he was being taken away.
I’m not an etiquette expert, but pretty sure if you want to ask Arnold Schwarzenegger for a Lamborghini, flying kicking him in the back is not a good start. pic.twitter.com/1vqV7yLSoy
— The Kiffness (@TheKiffness) May 18, 2019
“Arnold was not injured at all, as you can see in the video he is smiling later,” said Wayne Price, director of the Arnold Partner for Africa. Schwarzenegger has said he would not pursue legal action against his assaillant.
Schwarzenegger tweeted to his more than four million followers: “I thought I was just jostled by the crowd, which happens a lot. I only realised I was kicked when I saw the video like all of you.” He added that he would not press charges: “I’m moving on”.
His unnamed attacker was later handed over to police officers, event officials told the BBC.
Thanks for your concerns, but there is nothing to worry about. I thought I was just jostled by the crowd, which happens a lot. I only realized I was kicked when I saw the video like all of you. I’m just glad the idiot didn’t interrupt my Snapchat.
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) May 18, 2019
Arnold Classic Africa Multisport Festival released a statement following the attack in which the black man was described as some kind of attention seeker. He was “a crazed fan”, said to be “known to the police for orchestrating similar incidents in the past”. But they did not release the name of the attacker.