Former WWE producer John Carlan has shared insight as to how the company managed to acquire the libraries of various independent promotions for WWE Network, and the work that went into preparing them.
In an interview with Wrestlenomics, Carlan stated that he was “the point guy” when it came to acquiring the libraries of smaller independent promotions, including Progress, ICW, wXw, and Evolve. He also mentioned that the company was close to acquiring libraries for IWA Mid-South Wrestling, NWA Hollywood Wrestling, Houston Wrestling, Pacific Northwest Wrestling, and Grand Prix Wrestling, but could not come to an agreement with those promotions.
According to Carlan, these purchases were wins for both parties. WWE gained additional programming for their network at a discounted price, while the promotions were able to reach a wider audience through being on WWE Network. Carlan also revealed that the process of adding these libraries to the Network took time, and WWE considered adding different tiers to the platform for subscribers to access content from the various wrestling companies.
“It was going to be however many more dollars per month if you wanted [the additional libraries],” Carlan said. “It just took a lot to get it up, pretty much from the time we started doing business with these folks around 2017 or 2018.”
Carlan said that the indie promotions would send anywhere from six to ten of their weekly shows at a time to him, along with any pay-per-views they ran. He would get them ready to air on the Network, checking to make sure that everything was good to go, but the company didn’t release the majority of them until after the pandemic hit and they were in need of content.
Carlan started working with WWE back in 1998 as a producer, and was let go in 2020 as part of the mass releases that occurred due to budget cuts.
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Wrestlenomics with an h/t to Wrestling INC. for the transcription.
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