Welcome to week three of the question and answer period with WWF Canada President Carl Demarco. These are questions send in LAST week. Schedules did not permit Demarco and SLAM! Wrestling hooking up.
Below is the transcript of the 20-minute interview. I’ve given credit to the readers who sent in questions.
Q: How closely do you follow the ‘dirt sheets’ and also on the Internet? [Neil O’Brien, Vancouver]
A: Not really all that close. Everyday there’s some sort of new rumor or whatnot out there. I try to not get sucked up into the rumor mill. I really want to concentrate on running the company and taking care of business for the WWF in Canada.
Q: Do you read any of them? Do you have subscriptions to any of them?
A: No I don’t. But people always send them to me and I have a chuckle a lot of the times over a lot of the rumors because 90% of the time — maybe more — 95% of the time they’re not true. I could probably be here all day long looking at all that stuff and reading what people are speculating or saying out there. I’d rather concentrate my time on running the company operations up here in Canada.
Q: Does the WWF plan to run the ‘Lunch with your favorite wrestling’ contest again? [Lenny Whelan]
A: We’re always looking to do different type of promotions. We did that on our last SkyDome show. We’re doing a big contest for this upcoming SkyDome show [Feb. 21] with Stone Cold Steve Austin. You should be reading the Toronto Sun newspaper — there’s been quite a few promotional advertisements in there. The fans will have the opportunity for a private meet and greet with Stone Cold Steve Austin. That is a rare opportunity for someone to meet Steve Austin like that. We’ve gotten really good, positive feedback from the Toronto Sun on that one. [Editor’s Note: Buy a Toronto Sun to find out more! Contests in the newspaper do not run on the web site.]
Q: Why is the second RAW show taped instead of live? Are costs involved in this decision? [Robert Lepage, Ottawa]
A: That is a really good question. The big thing is that it takes a toll on all the crews, the talent and whatnot. There’s also a lot of office people from Stamford that go to these things. To go every single week, it takes you out of your regular routine in the office operations. And it’s a very physical toll on everybody to do that live every single week. It is also cost-efficient to do it first night live, second night taped because we’ve analyzed the ratings that these shows generate and we’ve found that just because you’re live doesn’t mean higher ratings. The ratings pan out the same. Therefore it’s a business decision to do it the way we’re doing it right now.
Q: When’s the WWF coming to Newfoundland again? [Brian Budgell, Newfoundland]
A: I don’t know right now. We’re in the process of trying to finalize our touring schedule right now. But we definitely want to head out east.
Q: Over the years, many people have criticized former WWF President Jack Tunney on many occasions. Since he was your predecessor as the WWF Canadian President, and has done many good things for Canada, do you think these criticisms are justified? [Lion-Heart, Nova Scotia] Also, was he a mentor of yours?
A: When you’re the top dog of a company, people always take shots at you. I don’t know what was being said. It’s hard for me to comment on that. That was so long ago.
Q: The second part of the question: Was he a mentor of yours? [Lion-Heart, Nova Scotia]
A: No. I knew him and had respect for him but he’s not a mentor. I knew Jack Tunney and respected him as an individual that where it is. Mentor to me means putting someone on a pedestal. Very few people who would do that. I would put my parents on a pedestal.
Q: Do you think that many wrestlers today are thinking more about the money than their careers? [Lion-Heart, Nova Scotia]
A: Every wrestler’s different. I’m sure the wrestlers want to make enough money so they can retire. This is not a job that you do until you’re 65 years old, unless you work for another organization which will remain nameless. I think that everybody tries to make enough money so that they can survive and retire. And they deserve it. The wrestlers put a lot into their jobs, their careers. It’s tough — the road, so many cities around the world every day of the year. They pay their dues and they deserve the opportunity to one day retire and not have to worry about money. On the career side, I think that every wrestler’s in it to do the best they can. It’s very competitive out there. But their nature, all of these wrestlers are very competitive. Especially in the WWF, where every WWF superstar is trying to be top dog. That’s a natural thing. All sports tend to be very competitive.
Q: Where are Dok Hendrix’s ‘Slam Jam’ segments taped? [D.B., Vancouver]
A: Dok tapes those in our Stamford, Connecticut studios. He does an unbelievable job. We get nothing but positive feedback from the fans. I personally really like them for the simple reason that they really allow us to tell the fans what’s happening in Canada. We’re very proud of those because it’s great information for our fans to keep them in tune with what’s going on.
Q: How often would he tape them? [D.B., Vancouver]
A: Every week.
Q: Who performs De-Generation X’s music? [Chris Werner]
A: We have a bunch of in-house guys who deal with that. I believe they also try to get the talent’s input. So, it’s do in-house.
Q: Any idea when you will be returning to Saint John, N.B. [Joe Osborne, New Brunswick]
A: Again, we’re in the process of trying to finalize our tour dates. I will say there might be some announcements — and I use the word might, we have to finalize them first — when Vince McMahon appears on Off The Record on TSN. It’s going to be a two-part series. It’s going to run, I believe, on Tuesday and Wednesday next week [Feb. 24, 25]. There might be some major news regarding Canada by Vince McMahon.
Q: Whatever happened to Terri Runnels, aka Marlena? Will she be on WWF programming again? [Craig, Toronto]
A: I have no idea. That’s a question to ask Golddust,
Q: Here’s one that relates to Off The Record. You mentioned in a previous interview that Owen was happy in the WWF and if he had the chance, he would not leave. When Bret was on Off The Record, he said that Owen would leave in a second if the WWF gave him the chance. How do you react to the completely opposite stories.
A: All I know is that when I spoke to Owen, Owen indicated to me that he thinks it was an opportunity for him.
Q: This one questions the morals of hiring Mike Tyson, who has done many bad things in his life. And now you’re promoting him as a pay-per-view draw. How do you respond to that? [Brian, Montreal]
A: Well, first of all, Mike Tyson is a huge draw. People want to see him. You can’t dispute that. Look at the success of his past pay-per-views buys on all his boxing events. Look at all the media attention he has brought to the World Wrestling Federation. That says that people want more Mike Tyson. Sure, not everyone’s 100% happy with Mike Tyson out there. I don’t think anybody can please everybody 100% of the time. Mike Tyson is a great for the WWF and we’re proud to be associated with Mike Tyson. Because of the Mike Tyson association with the WWF — the two biggest pay-per-view draws together — I will tell you WrestleMania will be the biggest WrestleMania ever in the history of professional wrestling, in the history of the World Wrestling Federation. Everybody’s going to be ordering it.
Q: There’s another question about possibly coming to Cranbrook, B.C. [Ryan Fanning, Cranbrook, B.C.]
A: Cranbrook, B.C. I’ve got to find out where Cranbrook, B.C. is! I don’t know how far that it from Vancouver.
Q: He’s wondering also if you’re going to go back to the Saddledome in Calgary. [Ryan Fanning, Cranbrook, B.C.]