It isn't just pro wrestlers that trained in the famed Hart Dungeon in Canada as actor and stuntman Paul Lazenby also trained there. After working with the likes of Chris Jericho and Lance Storm in the dungeon, Lazenby is now working with actors Kylee Bush and Brady Roberts in the web series Paper Champions.
Lazenby and Roberts discussed what fans can expect from Paper Champions when they spoke to Wrestling Inc. on our WINCLY podcast.
"It centers around a girl named Aubrey who is a struggling author," said Roberts. "Her dad operates a struggling indie company where none of the guys are any good and the arena is falling apart. The local ratings are in the can and Audrey inherits the company from her dad even though she's not a fan of wrestling and she wants to make some big changes in which the wrestlers have issues with that."
Lance Storm makes a cameo appearance and Lazenby talked about training with him nearly 30 years ago.
"I had a unique experience as I go way back and I actually trained at the Hart Brothers Academy and Lance Storm with Chris Jericho as his assistant were the instructors and they were just rounding out their own rookie years," said Lazenby.
"Lance always had a tremendous mind for the business and Chris always had great instincts and I got a better education out of those two rookie guys than I would have gotten out of established guys who might have been going through the motions."
Lazenby recalled Christian once joking Storm was probably born a 30-year old man and that when he met Storm, who was 22 at the time, it felt like he was talking to his dad.
He then talked about Jericho aligning himself with AEW and why he is the perfect person to be the face of their company as champion.
"I think WWE has needed competition for a long time," Lazenby said of AEW. "The whole industry suffers if there's only one giant and no one breathing down their neck – both pro wrestling and MMA.
"I think AEW really needs Chris and he's a guy with a great vision and can practically see around corners. He keeps people guessing and constantly reinvents himself. I think the whole company will benefit from having a guy with that mindset at the forefront of their company. If I were involved in AEW, I would do whatever I had to to keep Chris happy and keep him onboard. As a fledgling company still trying to find its feet, no one can help them more than Chris Jericho."
Roberts was then asked about the presentation of AEW and how their product provides a good alternative to WWE for pro wrestling fans.
"It's been awesome and I've watched every AEW show so far. I think they're presenting themselves in a way that's different enough from WWE that it's exciting to watch. I think it's a really exciting time in general for the wrestling industry with AEW coming out in October and New Japan's expansion, even some of the smaller companies," stated Roberts.
"It's a really exciting time in wrestling and that's why I'm excited about Paper Champions to coincide with that. We haven't announced a national release date yet but it will be in the early fall. But AEW makes me really excited to be a wrestling fan again which I haven't felt in many years because things have felt stagnant."
Lazenby then said that Jericho is also excited about Paper Champions as it gives a behind-the-scenes look at pro wrestling.
"He was constantly badgering me as to when he's gonna get some download links before they were available," Lazenby said of Jericho. "He's very excited about the series coming out and he asked if it's a wrestling show and I said it's a comedy that happens to be about a wrestling company. He said, 'Well that's the best part of wrestling – the craziest stories are about everything around what happens in the ring. So you guys are already coming at it from the right angle.'"
Lazenby stars in the new web series "Paper Champions" which is now available to watch via Amazon Prime: https://www.amazon.com/gp/video/detail/0IIH9436D51HUMJA7924VMU6HO/ref=imdbref_tt_wbr_piv?tag=imdbtag_tt_wbr_piv-20. His full interview with Wrestling Inc aired as part of Thursday's episode of our WINCLY podcast. It can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post. In it Lazenby discusses his role in the new series Paper Champions, getting to showcase his comedic side, training with Lance Storm and Chris Jericho, Killer Kross' bareknuckle fighting background, Chris Jericho becoming an AEW leader and more.