Jimmy Hart Talks WrestleMania, Vince Russo, Hulk Hogan, TNA & More
On WrestleReunion: "I jumped on about 5 or 6 years ago—it's kind of a different type thing. I didn't really know what to expect on anything, but you know once you get there, nobody rushes you through the line, it's not like everybody's sitting down and not paying any attention to the fans that come by to get their autograph or take pictures of everybody. And that's what I love about it. They let the wrestlers know: Look, if you're gonna be involved with this, then you've gotta definitely take your time with the fans because if it weren't for them, we wouldn't be doing what we're doing now."
Wrestlemania coming to New Jersey: "When I heard about that, I thought Holey moly! That might be a little chilly for a Wrestlemania 29 coming up there around the Northern area. But we spent so much time back in the day up there, and I think for people in New York, they're a different breed there, and New Jersey and that whole area up there. They're more used to the cold than we are down here in Florida now. But I'll tell you why I like it: because people ask me today 'Jimmy, you've done so many things for the wrestling business. You hit the Hall of Fame ring in 2005, 93 thousand plus people in Detroit up there with the Honky Tonk Man… and of course the Harts against The Bulldogs.' But Wrestlemania I is still the most important thing to me because whoever was on Wrestlemania I, we were kind of the pioneers back then because we didn't know if this was gonna work or not. It was on closed-circuit tv's and movie theatres, and if it had not been successful, we probably wouldn't be talking on the phone now.
Wrestlemania being at stadiums instead of arenas: "Here's what I think happens: We're gonna be on course for Miami for this upcoming Wrestlemania 28...65 or 70,000 have already been sold I think. So I think so many people (82 thousand) wanna go see this now you almost have to have it in the arenas outdoors that can hold that many because the pay-per-views do so well around the country and everything else, and—I don't care where you go—if you drive by one of the local establishments, all the PPV's are held there, the Wrestlemanias, they just have everything there. It's such a big thing because a lot of people can't drive down this year to Miami because I'm sure it'll be sold out in no time."
Vince Russo: "He was OK with me. When he first came to WCW he made an announcement, and said, 'Hey look, you're gonna see wrestling like you've never seen it before because I don't think you really care too much about the wrestling part.' (Which if that's the way you feel, that's the way you feel) And so I think that's what he really wrote about. I have nothing bad against him one way or another. I did my little stuff down there, he had set a few little matches this, that, and the other… I think it's hard to be a writer, especially when you're by yourself like that. You've gotta worry about people going and coming and quitting, and some of the bigger stars not wanting to do this thing, or not wantin' to be part of this. Also, there's always someone who's got a friend of a friend who wants to be involved. Maybe a guy's wife wants to be on tv or a girlfriend, and, if there's enough pressure on you, then you gotta work them in because the strongest force in the world is a woman! I'm sure he had to run through a lot of things that went up against him. I guess they were successful all these years 'cause, if not, I'm sure he would've been gone years and years ago, so I have nothing bad to say about him."
Hulk Hogan and TNA: "I love Hulk Hogan. I spoke to him 3 days ago. I think he went up to do the Wendy Williams Show. He asked me, 'Can you do me a favor? Can you watch the TNA show?' I said, 'Sure.' And so I watched the one from London and he said, 'Give me your opinion.' So I said, 'You packed on a few pounds.' He goes 'Jimmy Hart you always tell me the truth. You were right, I gotta slim down a bit.'
"He said 'What else?' I said 'To me, everybody wearing blue jeans and their t-shirts hanging out… this doesn't look professional. If you're a major company trying to get 50 or 60 bucks from your fans… If you dress like the audience, one day you're gonna wind up sitting in the audience!' And so that's why I still wear the crazy flashy jackets and carry the megaphone because you wanna stand out, and think that's what's helped me be around 30 years in this crazy business doing music and doing this. I told Hulk, I said 'AJ Styles and all these guys are phenomenal… and Christopher Daniels, I love those kids. For him to go out in blue jeans, it's just not professional."
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