Kayfabe, Lies and Alibis: Kevin Sullivan Shoot Interview

YouShoot with Kevin Sullivan
Presented by Sean Oliver and Kayfabe Commentaries Crew

Wrestling cards should get guys over, and build to the next show.

Sullivan has no regrets on things he booked.

Every heel today is the bastard son of the Original Sheik’s gimmick.

Beating Goldberg was the worst booking move a company ever made.

Sullivan lists the best bookers in wrestling history as Eddie Graham, Vince McMahon, Dusty Rhodes, Jim Cornette and Paul Heyman.

ECW was an updated version of Championship Wrestling from Florida in spirit.

Eddie Gilbert was a fine worker and booker. Gilbert and Heyman saw the future of wrestling.

Missy Hyatt buries Sullivan for messing with Gilbert, so Sullivan retorts that Hyatt was blowing other workers while married to Gilbert, so her sins outweigh his.

Brian Pillman and Eddie Gilbert were the young deaths that hurt wrestling the most since both men had such revolutionary ideas.

Jim Cornette is the hardest working man in wrestling.

Sullivan won’t confirm that the Ultimate Warrior was a male escort before breaking into wrestling.

The Warrior and Goldberg were booked very much the same way, a full decade apart.

Hulk Hogan was upfront in front of Sullivan, but would go to Bischoff to have angles or matches changed.

TNA needed to be far more different than the WWE product in order to prosper. Not having a niche killed the company.

Heels need to cower more to get over as cowardly.

Hall and Nash upstaged Hogan by being so quick witted on promos. Sullivan never wanted to feud Hogan with the Outsiders because he’d look bad.

The N.W.O. were hip meanwhile WCW had guys stuck in the older ways, which hurt WCW in the long run.

Sullivan doesn’t have any mementos of his wrestling career in his house.

Raven should have been a booker as he had great ideas. Pillman could have altered wrestling.

Sullivan is a Patriots fan but he hates Tom Brady.

King Curtis loved pot and pills and booze. Florida’s whole territory loved doing coke.

Sullivan admits he passed out during a different shoot since he had been drinking all day.

They go over a bunch of Sullivan rumors and he debunks most of them.

Jim Garvin and Precious got married as teenagers.

Chris Candido had a great mind for the biz.

They cover Iron Sheik craziness and how much is just a gimmick.

The Dungeon of Doom stable drew well enough, but once the n.W.o. started, the stable lost it’s push.

Ron Reis/Ron Studd was a friend of DDP’s and that’s how he got the role as The Yeti in the Dungeon.

The Taskmaster thinks wrestling will die out if the hokey aspect isn’t cut back upon.

The UFC business will explode if they find a Tyson or Ali kind of star since they are already raking in the cash without a true transcendent star.

The Dungeon of Doom and n.W.o both had too many members.

Bill Demott was highly underrated as a worker and Sullivan trusted him to get Goldberg over.

Sullivan used monster movies and Asian culture as inspiration for his Devil gimmick.

Jake the Snake dressing up as Santa Claus in order to interfere in a Sullivan and Rhodes match is the favorite angle from the Florida days.

Mark Lewin was great at acting like a complete nut and got himself over even at a time that people thought wrestling was all BS.

Gary Hart never yelled or screamed, but he looked like he’d kill you in a flash.

Mark Lewin, Superstar Graham, Raven, Jake the Snake and Luna would be the ideal “Army of Darkness” if Sullivan could traverse time and space.

The Nasty Boyz were stiff as Hell to work with.

Sullivan considers his ‘golden spike’ to be his favorite foreign object.

Kevin Sullivan loved that he was able to work in the Boston Garden and MSG. Having grown up in Boston, he was able to work in an arena he visited as a kid.

The Boston fans always cheered him, no matter if he was playing heel or face.

Hogan came up with the idea of Sullivan wearing his red and yellow colors as his heel counterpart.

Once Turner took over WCW, the office would often plan things without the talent’s opinion. This led to some stipulation matches not being followed up on because the talent didn’t even know were added.

Sullivan thinks TNA’s six sided ring can potentially be a hazard to workers who aren’t well practiced in it.

Hotel plants are stolen by Sullivan whenever possible.

Sullivan worked 350 days in one year for WCW while booking and working in the ring.

Never having a run in the WWF doesn’t bother Sullivan.

Lasting for so many decades in the business is what Sullivan considers his biggest achievement.

Kevin was paid 5 grand as part of the undercard for the Shea Stadium mega show in the mid seventies. This was the biggest pay off of his territorial days.

Sullivan explains his belief that there are more than one God because if you don’t respect other cultures and religious beliefs, it will only lead to hateful acts.

Lack of competition will cause the WWE to never try and reach new levels of creativity.

Dusty Rhodes was forceful in getting his way backstage while booking and working.

ECW would be warned by Sullivan before WCW signed talent away from them.

Sullivan is very impressed by how Heyman was able to keep creating talent almost as fast as WCW and the WWF could sign them away.

Dave Sullivan being mentally challenged pushed the envelope of good taste.

Meng was the toughest man in the business.

Eddie Graham’s suicide took everyone in Florida by surprise. Sullivan thinks he may have had a hidden illness that pushed him to do it.

Oliver Humperdink was Sullivan’s favorite manager to work with.

Brian Pillman and Kevin Sullivan worked the boys as well as the fans with their worked shoot program.

Sullivan spends several minutes talking about how he and Pillman worked everybody.

Nancy Sullivan (Woman) dressed far more risque than any valet before her in the business during her run as Sullivan’s valet.

Benoit was only beaten by Sullivan once during their whole multi-year feud. Nancy and Kevin were having issues before Benoit ended up having an affair with her.

Kevin and Benoit both worked very stiff matches with each other. Sullivan ended up with a serious neck injury from one of these brutal matches.

The Radicals leaving WCW in 2000 killed the WCW mid-card.

The media has done an injustice to Benoit and Nancy’s families by harping over their terrible end. They all still feel the sting of the loss and tragedy to this day and don’t want to have to relive it constantly.

Final thoughts: A lot of rehashed topics here, as the Benoit and Pillman stuff has been analyzed a million times before. I found the videos sent in by the fans to be a particularly annoying part of this project, as many of them were almost impossible to hear or make sense of and others were acting wacked out to get themselves over. All in all this was a bit of a chore to get through.

Written by Andrew Lutzke

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

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