Hustle Is Posting Right Now - An Event BY The IWC, FOR The IWC?
May 6, 2013 - 10:58:39 PM
"Kickstart my heart.."
It's time for something different.
If you've read my columns.. hell, if you've read the columns from anyone, LoP or otherwise.. you've seen fantasy booking scenarios. Sometimes they're realistic "Person A should beat Person B this weekend at the pay-per-view, and here's why" scenarios. Sometimes they're full-fledged "If Company A brought Wrestler A in, this is what I'd do with them if I were in charge" scenarios. Fantasy booking is almost a must in the world of wrestling columns. I understand that it isn't everyone's cup of tea, but let's be real.. you, as readers, can't truly support a columnist's opinion if all they say is "this is good, this is bad, that match was fun, that sucked, etc". At some point, especially if the columnist sees negatives in things, you have to read their work and say "But what would you do better?"
Recently, a long-time reader and supporter of LoP, Mr Nash Bennett, approached me with an idea. He wanted to put together an independent wrestling show that was by the internet fans, for the internet fans. He asked me to be a Creative Consultant for the event, wanting me to use my knowledge of the independent scene and my budding relationships with some of the indy talent and their "people" in putting a card together. However, the "by the internet fans" part is where his idea took a twist. He wanted to open up a Kickstarter page so that you, the members of the Internet Wrestling Community, could help in getting the show off the ground. This is an event that would be able to be seen by the masses, both on internet pay-per-view and on DVD, but it's your money that helps to fund things. Putting a wrestling show together is no easy task, but the more money that gets thrown at the project, the bigger and better things will be. Bigger names on the card, better production values, a better venue.. you name it. Fellow LoP columnist Al Laiman has signed on to be the voice of the event, and he will handle the play-by-play duties for the show, and you can expect to hear from him in the not-too-distant future in regards to his involvement. Think of this as another way for LoP and the LoP community to branch out a bit.
Turbo Charged Wrestling's "IWC Independence Day" was born.
If you're familiar with Kickstarter, you know that this isn't just something you'd spend your money on and get nothing in return. There are over a dozen different pricing tiers for you to choose from, with each tier providing you bigger and better rewards, ranging from a personal "thank you" for your support all the way up to being flown out to the event, having your room & board paid for, and getting to have dinner with Mr Bennett, as well as Al Laiman and possibly some of the wrestlers who will be competing on the show. Another thing about Kickstarter that I like is the fact that your money goes right back to you if you back the project but the project doesn't meet the designated funding total in the allotted time, so there really isn't a risk on your part.
Before I link you to the Kickstarter page for the event, I wanted to take this time to conduct a really brief interview with Mr Bennett, allowing you to get to know the guy a bit, and to see what drove him to come up with this idea. First, a bit of an introduction from the man himself..
Nash Bennett: Hey, guys! It's truly a pleasure to be doing this interview. I've been a longtime fan of LOP, and to be collaborating with the likes of the legendary Hustle is a real treat.
Question #1: What kind of wrestling fan are you? How long have you been watching the sport we all love so much?
Bennett: I've been watching wrestling since I was 5 years old. I remember being in a bowling alley and seeing my first promo. I'm not sure who it was but he was talking about torturing a fly and watching it quiver and how that was what he was going to do to his opponent. I was mesmerized by the outlandish way that he was presenting himself and that really got me hooked. I'm, without a doubt, a main stream mark. I grew up in a small town in the northeast, so I was all about the WWF. I was in middle school during the Attitude Era. While many of my friends watched both WCW and WWF, I never watched WCW. It's only been in the past few years that I've gone back and watched as much WCW as I could. The Stro channel on justin.tv helped out a lot with that. I stopped watching around 2000 and didn't start up again till 2007, and since then, I've kept up with both current WWE while also going back and watching everything I've missed.
Question #2: Who are your favorite wrestlers, both all-time and currently?
Bennett: I have many favorite wrestlers of the past, but one outshines all the rest. From the first time I saw him, it's Bret Hart. His technical skill in the ring. The way he was able to put on a great match with any size or style of opponent. I'm going to catch some flack for this but I even love his mic skills. I compare him to John Wayne, as many people say that Wayne was a terrible actor, but I think that he was a great actor with limited range. What Bret did, he did well. My greatest memory as a child was the ending of Wrestlemania 10, with Bret triumphing over the evil Yokozuna and being hoisted in the air and paraded around the ring by all the top faces of the company. Some of my other favorites of the past are the Road Warriors, Tully Blanchard, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, evil Doink The Clown, Big Van Vader, pre-Hollywood Rock, Mr Perfect, Randy Savage, and Crush. The man's finisher was literally him attempting to cave a man's skull in with his bare hands. How can you hate on that?
As far as today is concerned, I'm a big CM Punk fan. I feel like his year-long plus run with the title will be talked about for years. The way he went from being the anti-hero to the babyface to a straight up heel blew my mind. It makes me sad to say that two of my other favorites are Kofi Kingston and Alex Riley. I actually called for both of them to be World Champs by now and you can see where that got me. I have a friend with whom I have a friendly bet going as to who will have the better overall career, Alex Riley or Drew McIntyre. He's winning. As for up and comers, nobody touches Dean Ambrose, in my opinion. My eyes are locked on him every second that he's on screen. Roman Reigns, on the other hand, needs to stop screaming. Just comes across as trying way too hard.
Question #3: What gave you the idea to do a Kickstarter? Most people want to do something like this, but you actually took a step towards DOING IT.
Bennett: It's funny, I'm totally one of those people who have had big dreams and not done anything about it. I've had big ideas in the past, however I've never seen them come to fruition. I've got 40 pages of an unfinished graphic novel, for example. I've wanted to work in the wrestling business all my life, but I never took the necessary steps to make that dream a reality. My grandmother recently passed away and left me a little money. It got me thinking about my regrets. Finally, I said to myself "what the hell am i waiting for?" I was going to put on a small show, but when I started crunching the numbers, I realized it just wasn't feasible. Then a friend of mine told me about Kickstarter and it just made sense to me. I wanted to do something and finish it. The process went very quickly after that. The next week was spent putting it together. I looked up venues, licenses, actual cost and said I can do this. I contacted a friend of my father, who is a stand up comedian but was also a wrestling promoter down south. He put me in contact with a guy who wishes to remain anonymous for the time being, but I will say that he has a lot of friends on the indy scene and gave me all kinds of advice on how to make this happen. To be honest, I don't think he thinks I can pull this off in terms of getting the funding, but he has said that if I do raise the funds he's gonna put me in contact with the people who I want for the show.
Question #4: Why should people donate money to this? What will separate this event from other events that happen all across the world?
Bennett: I know I can't do this by myself, and frankly, I wouldn't want to. That's why I asked you and Al Laiman if they wanted to be involved. I feel as though this will be different simply because of the fact that it's being done by the fans themselves. We have the ability to put on the exact kind of show we want and avoid the pitfalls of those promotions who don't take what the IWC wants into account. Think of it as an IWC appreciation night. If you people want to see everyday superfans put together the greatest show that they possibly can, this is your chance. It's also a chance for you to be able to watch a show, hold the DVD in your hand and say "I helped make this happen".
Question #5: Let's say this project gets fully funded and the show takes place. What then? Do you fade away, proud of your accomplishment, or do you have any future plans?
Bennett: I've thought a lot about this question before it was even asked. I definitely do have bigger dreams and aspirations. If this project gets funded, and if we are able to put on a memorable show that has universal acclaim, I feel that we can take this one step further. There is a gentleman who, a couple years ago, took $100,000 of people's hard earned cash, promised them a pro wrestling season, and then did not deliver. I don't mean it wasn't good. It literally never happened. I want to do something about that. If possible, my next project will be a series of 8 one-hour episodes culminating in a three-hour PPV. I would hire some writers, a film crew, the whole nine yards. Obviously, this is way in the future, but this is a very real passion and a very real possibility. That project wouldn't be able to be streamed live, but it would be put out as a DVD box set. Just like a better version of Wrestling Society X, which I own and love.
If you have any questions or comments that you feel should go directly to Mr Bennett, you can contact him in the following ways..
If you have any questions for me, you already know how to reach me.
Here is the link to the actual Kickstarter page, where you can watch a brief video from Mr Bennett, as well as view all of the pricing tiers and the rewards that come with them..
ICW Independence Day
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