Kayfabe, Lies and Alibis: Diana (Hart) Smith Shoot Interview

Bret Hart’s sister and Davey Boy Smith’s widow talks about her famous family and their highs and lows of wrestling fame

I’m not sure what to expect with this one, but with all the Hart family turmoil, along with her husband Davey Boy Smith’s career and premature death, there is definitely some perspective to be mined here.

This was taped at the recent Califlower Alley convention. Diana is there to see some old friends and promote her new books that she has written.

Her son, Harry Smith, has been a WWE star and remains a New Japan staple. She would like to see him work more often, but he rarely works in areas where that’s possible.

Diana is once again living in Calgary, but this past winter was so brutal that she is pining to return to Florida, where she previously lived for a bit.

After the British Bulldog died, Diana rotated between Florida, Canada and England.

Harry Smith had some recent heat with Jake the Snake after an altercation Smith started over some comments Roberts made about the Bulldog. Things have since calmed down.

Dynamite Kid never made up with Davey Boy prior to Smith’s passing. Smith seemed to want to make amends but his unexpected passing made that impossible. Kid has make overtures to see Diana and her kids.

Dynamite’s physical state is sad to see. Davey Boy and Kid both destroyed their bodies in order to put on the best possible show for the fans.

Diana and Davey first met while Davey was working for Stampede. Her father Stu made sure the workers knew to stay away from his daughters, but Diana kind of forced the issue as she was smitten by Smith. The fact that their dating was secretive made the romance all the more powerful as their bonding was forbidden.

Working in the WWF in 1996 was the best time of her life. The traveling town to town was exciting and she was able to spend a lot of time with Davey. The fans gave her a lot of heat and she really got a charge out of being in front of the audience night after night.

The topic veers off to Davey’s career ending back injuries and how the toll was not only physical, but mental as wrestling was all he had known for decades. Bulldog had issues with painkiller addictions, and cleaning up while still in great pain forced him to strike a delicate balance between feeling better and being an adict.

Diana learned a lot about herself as she dealt with Bulldog’s death. WCW cut him after he was hurt in their ring, but then he signed with the WWF only 10 days before Owen Hart was killed in an accident on PPV. She was never able to properly grieve for Owen as her family split between those who wanted to remain in the WWF’s future and others who wanted to sue them into oblivion.

Harry trained to be a wrestler while he was still a teenager. Davey died when Harry was still a greenhorn in the business.

The 2010 WWE Hall of Fame saw Stu Hart being inducted. This brought the Hart family together for the first time since Owen’s funeral. This led to the kids reuniting and making amends. Smith Hart’s recent death gave the family another chance to come together and heal old wounds.

Owen was a prankster even in high school. He’d put rusty wrenches, potatoes with faces drawn on them and other such things in Diana’s bags to crack his sister and her friend up while they ate lunch at student council meetings. This would disrupt the principal’s stern demeanor.

Shawn Michaels chose to work with the Bulldog in one of his first programs after he won the world title. This gave Diana a role on TV, and gave the Bulldog a starring role in the WWF. Diana was impressed with how much effort the men put into their matches night after night.

Diana was said to have been the favorite of Stu’s. She and Owen were the babies out of 12 kids, so they were doted upon.

The infamous story of Stu using a spatula for scooping up cat dung while cooking eggs for the wrestlers, only to use the same spatula for the eggs is not true in the least. Stu was a great cook and had a kitchen full of utensils, but he never made the wrestler’s breakfast. Some talent would occasionally come for a big Sunday dinner. Diana gets really fired up over people telling these fibs about her father.

Jim Neidhart is mostly retired now and has settled down compared to his wild past. His knees are bad, but he still likes to get out and lift weights. Diana likes to work out herself, and she goes into explaining her routine.

Teddy Hart has had his demons, but he’s never given up. He’s been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and is fighting it without medicine.

Diana recalls how her father grew up so poor that he went to school without shoes, and spent two years living in a tent in the middle of the Canadian winter.

Her first book, “Under the Mat”, was a scathing tell all against many members of her family. Diana claims that was not the intention, but her co-author altered the structure.

Diana attempted suicide at her lowest point, and spent several weeks in a psyche ward in order to get her head together. She goes into her family’s reaction and how she had to deal with the guilt of what she almost did to her children.

Final thoughts: Diana was very long winded, and the interviewer admitted afterwards that he was only planning on a few minutes of her time and ended up talking on camera with her for nearly an hour and a half. She had a unique perspective, but nothing you really need to take time out to listen to.

 

 

 

Written by Andrew Lutzke

The grumpy old man of culturecrossfire.com, lover of wrasslin' and true crimes.

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