Why Bodybuilder Kai Greene Said He Wanted To 'Kill Every Living Thing'

"I felt like the anger would consume me; like there wasn't a place big enough on this planet to hold the rage in my heart," legendary bodybuilder Kai Greene once said as tears raced down his cheeks like furious serpents. This is a man who transcended more than some people experience in two lifetimes. Through all of the trial and tribulation that possessed his youth, he learned a thing or two about what it takes to really make something of oneself while exorcising some intense demons in the process. 

Bodybuilding isn't just about mere exhibition — it commands some serious conviction and intense dedication. Green, otherwise known as "The Predator" by fans and his peers, has been one of the sport's most iconic and devoted personalities for nearly three decades. He's participated in the Mr. Olympia competition several times and came in second place in 2012, 2013, and 2014, as Players Bio reports. A documentary chronicling his early life and career as a bodybuilder is set for release this week. So if you want a more in-depth look at the man who, on numerous occasions, was referred to as "the People's Champ" (via Muscle and Fitness), now's your chance. "Kai: The Kai Greene Story" will be available to stream on August 26. 

I wanted to kill every living thing

Kai Greene spent most of his teenage years behind bars at a juvenile detention center. A product of a troubled upbringing, he was prone to fits of violence and reportedly got into fights at school on a regular basis. "I wanted to kill everything," he is quoted as saying in a clip from the movie (via Generation Iron). It's hard to imagine more harrowing and tragic words being used to describe the psyche of one's youth, but for Kai Greene, it was the reality he grappled with every single day. 

According to a separate report from Generation Iron, Greene was a ward of the state after social services took him away from his parents. He grew up the victim of physical and verbal abuse, and despite court efforts to relocate him to a more suitable environment, his experience in foster homes and orphanages only compounded his frustration with the world around him. Things were worse after he was sent to a juvenile detention center, but it was there that he learned to channel his rage into bodybuilding and discovered a new path, passion, and identity. 

Greene discovered bodybuilding in juvenile hall

In order to keep his mind and body occupied, Greene pressed himself to the threshold of physical endurance and would spend his days endlessly doing pushups in his cell. His anger was more than he could bear, and for means of getting all that was pent up inside of him out, he focused on getting stronger by whatever means necessary. He also restricted his diet to eating only bread and drinking water. After a time, an overseer of the youths in the facility noticed Greene's day-to-day activities and handed him a body-building magazine, believing that it might provide him with a new avenue to pursue. The suggestion took, and as soon as his time behind bars ended, he embarked upon his personal journey of recovery and redemption (per Generation Iron). 

It was also during this time that Greene reportedly adopted a new name. Originally born Leslie Greene, he declared that the boy he once was — the one full of so much rage, hatred, and insatiable discontent — was dead. He renamed himself "Kai" and never looked back (via Generation Iron).