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WWE News: Ex-WWE writer Brian Mann talks about Paige, Vince McMahon and original WrestleMania 32 plans

Billi Bhatti
10.44K   //    23 Mar 2017, 09:56 IST
Mann dishes out specifics in the WWE creative process

What’s the story?

In a recent interview with us, on The Dirty Sheets Podcast Network, via our latest “DS 247” show, Ex-WWE writer Brian Mann spoke about his time in the WWE and gave an insight into how the WWE booking process works, his thoughts on Paige and Xavier Woods, in addition to telling several very interesting stories- including a huge revelation about CM Punk.

In case you didn’t know...

Brian Mann worked for the WWE in 2011, a time when the WWE was particularly interesting, as it included the “Summer of Punk” which you can read about here. During the interview, Mann recalls the writers asking each other, “how are we gonna screw this up?” after Punk won the WWE Title from John Cena at Money in the Bank in Chicago. 

Brian Mann can currently be heard every week on The Law Podcast. He reviews old episodes of Monday Nitro from the year 2000. The show is called “Keep it 100” and is hosted by Brian Mann and Nate Milton.

The heart of the matter

During the interview, Brian Mann spoke about the creative process and gave examples of how frantic and last minute things can be. He also outlined the differences between bookers and writers. 

We actually Interviewed Brian Mann just hours after the Paige/Woods/Maddox leaks, so it made sense to open up the show by addressing the situation and asking him for his thoughts and opinions on the story.

He believes that everyone involved is a victim and that what people do privately should not have any implications on their career as long as it’s legal, especially when their privacy is invaded. We talked at length about Paige specifically.

Mann said that people are focusing too much on her job with WWE, which he believes is safe, and not the real story, the future of her movie which is being produced by The Rock. He is of the opinion that the movie will still go ahead, but it will be more under scrutiny than her WWE career.

When discussing Xavier Woods and The New day, he said that they should not be taken off TV and he hopes that audiences will be mature enough to not focus on the leaks by coming up with chants.

However, he acknowledged that the WWE would be facing some tough insider crowds in the coming weeks, with Brooklyn, Philadelphia and Orlando (after WrestleMania) all hosting Raw in the coming weeks (we spoke to Mann two days before Raw in Brooklyn).

Some of the other highlights of the interview include:

- Clarification that the writers do NOT decide on the winners and losers or the finishes of matches. 

- How Vince Vince McMahon will ultimately go with his own gut and often contradict himself in order to go with his preferences. For example, declining ratings were blamed on Daniel Bryan, but when ratings declined with Roman Reigns on top, McMahon refused to blame Reigns.

-  He explained the difference between the bookers and the writers. The bookers book both the shows- that’s the matches, the winners and losers and finishes. The writers are there to fill segments and are expected to pitch ideas for storylines and character development. The higher-ups (Vince and Triple H) may pass these suggestions on to the bookers, however, Mann made it clear that the WWE is ultimately run by Vince McMahon.

- He revealed that Mark Henry was supposed to be a long-term Champion, who was to reign all the way until WrestleMania. However, due to an injury, the WWE was forced to book Daniel Bryan to cash in his Money in the Bank.

- The revelation that Seth Rollins was only told two hours before he was due to cash-in his Money in the Bank at WrestleMania 31, while Mann was told two days before the show.

- How John Cena was supposed to hold the WWE Title all the way up to WrestleMania 28 until that it was changed because of how popular CM Punk got.

- The difficulties of working with Kevin Nash.

- The original plans for WrestleMania 32 and how the top matches were ruined due to injuries. They were set to be The Rock vs. Triple H, Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker and John Cena vs. Roman Reigns. 

You can hear the full Interview from The Dirty Sheets Podcast’s “DS 247” show by simply activating the Soundcloud link below.

What’s next?

The Dirty Sheets have also released a second podcast with Brian Mann, where he gave his thoughts on WrestleMania 33. WrestleMania 33 takes place on 2nd April in Orlando. You can download the WrestleMania preview show on iTunes now by going here. 

Author’s take

The writers are often criticised online for the direction of the company or for the Superstars being pushed or not pushed. However, as Mann explained, Vince McMahon ultimately decides everything and the writers are simply there to piece the plans together, once the likes of Vince McMahon, and to a lesser extent, Triple H, have made the big decisions.  

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Billi Bhatti
In September 2015, Billi Bhatti launched The Dirty Sheets Podcast, with the goal to break and cover professional wrestling news, that people would actually care about — rather than developing a click-bait news site. The Dirty Sheets Podcast is available on iTunes. Billi was a participant on Big Brother UK in 2007. Prior to Big Brother, he worked as a personal trainer and commercial model, modelling for the likes of Telenor, Birkenstock, Ringspun and Animal. Billi appeared for IPW:UK Wrestling f
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