By Jay Cal, writer for http://socaluncensored.com:
I’ve been very fortunate over the years to speak very candidly to and about Adam Pearce. His storied career rooted in the Midwest flourished in Southern California for more than a decade, with 5 reigns as NWA World Heavyweight Championship and matches all across the globe. In this interview, I discuss with Pearce his thoughts on the situation with the NWA, as he was still champion during ownership change and how it affected his role as champion. I also asked Pearce about his role with NXT, the accolades he has received, his film projects, the way he departed from independent wrestling and much more.
JC: First off, I want to congratulate you on a successful start in your second career as film maker. The Seven Levels of Hate documentary, which sold across the globe, is officially out of production?
AP: I appreciate the compliment, and yeah, what an awesome trip that entire experience was. I’m so grateful to have had such incredible success with the film, because I honestly didn’t expect it. But no, I am not producing another print of DVDs, if that’s what you mean.
Unfortunately, once the film ended up on torrent sites it killed sales. Eventually it slowed so much that it became obvious that another printing would be futile. As a producer, and one that experienced better-than-I-ever-hoped-for sales, it really sucked. You feel violated, because it truly hurts that “fans” are STEALING from you. But if I’m being honest, I am surprised it took so long for the film to end up being pirated. It flew under that radar for a long time.
For those that still want to purchase the film and SUPPORT the cause, I’m working on something with Amazon, but I don’t have a timeframe on that.
JC: From Pro Wrestler to Film Maker you were working on another documentary, On My Honor… is that still in the works?
AP: I wish, but unfortunately no, and there are a number of factors which I addressed on my Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/OfficialAdamPearce) several months ago. I had some minor technical issues with what was shot, but the real kicker was that I went back to Ring of Honor last summer as part of an angle that they are still running with, and that made a large chunk of the initial concept for the film and what I shot useless.
On top of that, I wasn’t happy with the fact that due to costs and copyrights, I wouldn’t have had much footage in the film. Ultimately it boils down to the fact that didn’t want to produce something that I personally wouldn’t have been happy with, even if I really thought I could sell it in large quantities.
JC: Had there not been a disturbance in the direction of the National Wrestling Alliance in the course of the feud, what was the original plan after the conclusion of the Seven Levels of Hate?
AP: I’m not sure how to answer that, because I was never going to be involved in things post-“7 Levels”, nor was I ever involved in long-term planning around the belt. People have long thought that I was the booker or part of the booking of the belt, and that was never the case. I had a ton of input into what I personally was doing, but in the end, I had no real decision-making power.
There are lots of things what were happening with me during the planning of the series, things that are finally taking shape for me professionally now. Although it isn’t mentioned at all in the film, there was a very real possibility early on that the series was going to be a clean sweep for Cabana.
So to answer the question, outside of Cabana being champion and having a year-long run (which is what was initially agreed upon) I have no idea what direction things would have gone on to after the series. As we have seen, there have been ups and downs, but what else should have been expected?
JC: What was your plan post “7 Levels?” Where did you anticipate being?
AP: Well, if you look at my career specifically in the time right before the series started up until now, I think you’ll see a pretty varied body of work. One of the things I’ve been particularly adept at over the years is keeping many “irons in fires”, so to speak. So while I’ll save the intimate details for the book I’ll probably never write, suffice it to say that at that time there was a very real possibility that my time on the independent circuit was coming to an end.
As it unfolded, things I thought were going to happen didn’t, other opportunities arose, and all of it allowed Cabana and I to finish the series. Everyone saw how that turned out, and I’m actually really glad it all worked out the way it did.
JC: After the NWA World Heavyweight Championship was declared vacant post the Seven Levels of Hate, had anyone asked (outside of Cabana) who would you have put the World Heavyweight Championship Title on?
AP: It would have gone to Cabana, for a year, as discussed. I think had that occurred we would have seen what we all predicted – a notable increase in visibility, notoriety, and marketable attention for the brand here in the United States. It didn’t happen, as we’ve seen, but that hasn’t stopped either the NWA or Cabana from doing everything possible to raise the profile of their respective brands.