Former WWE, WCW, and TNA wrestler Marc Mero sat down for an interview with new Wrestling Inc. contributor Drew Rice for a Wrestling Inc. Daily exclusive. During their talk they discussed a variety of topics, including his time working with Dusty Rhodes in WCW, and what it was like negotiating contracts with Vince McMahon in the WWE.
While discussing his Johnny B. Badd character, Mero was asked if he was worried if the nature of the flamboyant gimmick would regulate him to the mid-card.
“You know, here I am making $23,000 a year digging in-ground swimming pools, and here is a six-figure contract,” remembered Mero. “You know, you weigh them out and go, ‘You know what? [That isn’t too bad].’ Not only that, Dusty Rhodes was the brainchild behind that character, and I worked with Dusty so much on that character. He taught me how to walk, how to talk, and, you know, ‘Say it like this!’ Some of the greatest memories I have was working with Dusty and learning the character Johnny B. Badd. Because, here I am just really out of wrestling school, I was so green, you know? And here I am wrestling guys like Sting, Cactus Jack, Ric Flair, and guys that have been around the business for years. [I remember] being so nervous, and going out there and not even knowing what you’re doing. But Dusty worked with me and helped me make it more into the character, where I could have my wrestling catch-up to the character, so to speak.”
Mero spoke a bit more about working Dusty, and how important Dusty was to the industry. He also spoke about the personal loss he felt with Dusty’s passing.
“I was so blessed,” shared Mero. “Like I said, some of the greatest memories I have were working with Dusty Rhodes. Losing him was terrible for the industry, but more on a personal level it hurt. Some of us were devastated when we lost The Dream.”
When discussing his debut with the WWE at WrestleMania 12, Mero talked about what it was like negotiating contracts with Vince McMahon. Mero also shared if he enjoyed working more as Johnny B. Badd or as ‘Wildman’ Marc Mero.
“Well, you know, there was two times I was offered to go to the WWE,” recalled Mero. “Each time my contract was up with WCW I actually met with Vince to structure a deal. I told them the first time, ‘I get a guaranteed contract with WCW, and I’m not going to come here [without one].’ So, we parted ways with no hard feelings., you know, it was like, ‘That’s what we do here.’ The next time around I said, ‘Vince, I want a guaranteed contract, I want a signing bonus,’ and I had different stipulations in my contract, and he met them all. He wanted me really bad at that time. And it was an honor.
“I always felt like I needed to go to the WWE, because going to WrestleMania was like going to the dance. It was like the Super Bowl of wrestling. So having that opportunity to work WrestleMania was an honor. I enjoyed the character of Johnny B. Badd so much more. It was so opposite of who I am and was real fun. And ‘Wildman’ Marc Mero, I never really connected with and the fans didn’t connect with it. It was very difficult. But I wouldn’t change anything. I have no regrets, I’m glad I did it, and I had a really good career.”
You can keep up with Marc Mero on Facebook at Marc Mero, on Twitter @MarcMero, or on Instagram @marcmero. You can also check out his public speaking website HERE. Mero’s full interview can be found below: