Rumours persist about Colosseum as potential fight venue.
Elon Musk on Friday confirmed media reports that he is to fight Mark Zuckerberg at an "epic location" in Italy, following months of rumours.
Musk, who owns Twitter (recently rebranded as X), said the cage fight with Facebook (Meta) founder Zuckerberg would be managed by their respective foundations, not by the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).
He said the highly-anticipated fight would be livestreamed on Meta and X, writing: "Everything in camera frame will be ancient Rome, so nothing modern at all."
Musk, 52, claims that he has spoken to Italian premier Giorgia Meloni and culture minister Gennaro Sangiuliano about the fight, adding that they "have agreed on an epic location" and that all proceeds will "go to veterans".
The fight will be managed by my and Zuck’s foundations (not UFC).
Livestream will be on this platform and Meta. Everything in camera frame will be ancient Rome, so nothing modern at all.
I spoke to the PM of Italy and Minister of Culture. They have agreed on an epic location.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 11, 2023
On Friday afternoon, Italy's culture minister said he had "a long and friendly conversation with Elon Musk about a major historical reenactment event" but said that it would not be held in Rome.
"There will be a huge donation to two important Italian paediatric hospitals for the upgrading of facilities and scientific research to fight diseases", Sangiuliano wrote on X.
Lunga e amichevole conversazione con @elonmusk su un grande evento di evocazione storica. Non si terrà a Roma. Ci sarà una ingente donazione a due importanti ospedali pediatrici italiani per il potenziamento delle strutture e la ricerca scientifica per combattere malattie.
— Gennaro Sangiuliano (@g_sangiuliano) August 11, 2023
On Wednesday, during an appearance on Mike Tyson's Hotboxin' podcast, UFC president Dana White claimed that he had been in talks with Italian culture officials about the prospect of holding the Musk vs. Zuckerberg fight at the Colosseum.
White predicted the event would bring in "a billion dollars in revenue" and claimed it was the kind of fight that even "your grandmother would watch".
In late June TMZ reported that an Italian culture ministry official contacted Zuckerberg, 39, about staging the MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) clash with Musk at "the most fabled fight theater in history."
Musk then posted a series of tweets referencing the Roman amphitheatre, including: "Some chance fight happens in Colosseum" and a quotation from the movie Gladiator: "What we do in life, echoes in eternity".
At the time, a culture ministry spokesperson said that the proposal to host a fight between the two tech billionaires was "unfounded", in a statement published by Corriere della Sera newspaper.
Noting that use of the Colosseum is granted to a select number of high-profile paid events "almost always for charity", the ministry said that if Zuckerberg and Musk wished to "perform in the Colosseum" it should be "a non-violent challenge", proposing "a sort of certamen, a duel with Latin verses."
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