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In 2006, Volodymyr Zelenskyy Won Ukraine’s Version Of ‘Dancing With The Stars’

Though Donald Trump’s disastrous tenure as President of the United States may have given a bad name to reality TV stars-turned-presidents, Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelenskyy has many people rethinking the deleterious connection.

Most people know that before becoming president of Ukraine in 2019, Zelenskyy made his living as an actor and comedian—a career he began when he was still just a teenager. But new clips have been popping up of Zelenskyy’s days on the stage which, when coupled with his fierce determination to stay put and defend his country, are quickly turning him into a kind of modern-day folk hero.

Over the weekend, The Recount’s Kat Abughazaleh pulled up a clip of Zelenskyy getting jiggy with it back in 2006, when he was a contestant on the Ukrainian version of Dancing With the Stars.

That he took home the top prize should not be surprising to anyone who watches the clip.

It was, of course, just the latest in a long line of Zelenskyy’s surprising accomplishments that people are celebrating following his bold stance against Russia. In addition to his time spent on the dance floor, Zelenskyy stans are also remembering the time he created and starred in a series in which he played a history teacher who accidentally became president.

Perhaps most endearingly, he also voiced the ever-lovable Paddington in the film’s international release.