Source: The Miami Herald
- Pop TV President Brad Schwartz recently spoke with Jim Varsallone of The Miami Herald about TNA and Impact Wrestling to the network in 2016. The full interview can be read at this link. Below are highlights:
"Dixie and the Impact team were looking for a new home for their series. They had huge success on Spike. Millions of viewers watching every week, and they really enjoyed that success. In switching to another network [Destination America] which didn't have the distribution that Spike had, they obviously noticed a little bit of a hit to the success that they had."
"So [TNA was] actively looking for a new television partner, and I think made the rounds and met with a lot of cable networks to see where a home might be. We were on their list of calls, and they came in [about a couple of months ago], and we had our entire team meet with them and listen to the pitch and listen to what they wanted to do -- where they saw the company going, where they saw [pro wrestling] going. That's how it came to our attention. We had a lot of people in that meeting -- our marketing team, our programming team, our communications team, our research team. We really wanted everybody to hear it. We even had representatives from CBS and Lionsgate in that meeting, so everybody could hear it firsthand."
"I would say the next day we [Pop, CBS, Lionsgate] were all like, 'We got to do this.' I'm not spinning this in any way. It's the truth. When we knew this meeting was happening, there were people like me. I grew up watching wrestling, and I remember going to WrestleMania, and I had my own wrestling name, when I was younger, when we joked around in the basement."
"Dixie is so impressive, and she's such an amazing spirit with a good, positive energy to her. By the end of the meeting, she had won everyone in the room over, and the next day it was unanimous, 'Let's do this.'"
Schwartz also discussed the Pop TV network re-branding itself, a term they're registering for their audience and more in the full interview.