Maria Kanellis-Bennett is leading the launch of a new professional wrestling promotion.
Women’s Wrestling Army is scheduled to hold its first event at the start of next month. Kanellis-Bennett says the idea started last year, while she and Bobby Cruise were working together with Ring of Honor’s women’s division.
“It was all sparked by the fact that all of the women were coming up to Bobby and myself and saying, ‘You guys should start something,'” Kanellis-Bennett told PWPonderings. “And honestly, I didn’t want to run a wrestling company. I loved my job at Ring of Honor. I loved being able to go in and focus on the women and just worry about them, be talent relations, and focus on producing and booking.
“But you look around and there’s not a whole lot of opportunity for that. And so, we had to create something. And I wanted to create something very – very wrestler-friendly.”
Maria Kanellis-Bennett admits she had some reservations about starting a brand new promotion but she began the embrace the idea when a business model emerged that put more power in the hands of the performers themselves.
“Where this is going to be streaming eventually is going to be a profit-sharing platform,” Kanellis-Bennett explained. “So, yes, of course, Women’s Wrestling Army will make up for whatever was spent in flights and booking and all of that kind of stuff. But there will be a profit-sharing percentile.”
Maria Kanellis-Bennett says Women’s Wrestling Army will be centered around an exclusive content webpage, where fans can support the promotion. Kanellis-Bennett said WomensWrestlingArmy.com will be the only place to watch the promotion’s shows. 2-3 episodes are being promised per month.
The page will also include additional content, including interviews, photoshoots, and documentary-style footage.
“It’s a big undertaking, but this is the only way I felt comfortable in doing it,” Kanellis-Bennett said. “But there’s also going to be more streaming websites that… we’re gonna be a part of. And no matter where we go there is going to be a piece that is going to be profit sharing. And that’s to hold me and Bobby accountable for what we’re doing. And also to give the women their own product.
“It’s their bumps. It’s their bodies. It’s their residual damage. So, hopefully – cross my fingers, knock on wood, spin a few times, throw salt over my shoulder – hopefully, this will be really good and will be really profitable for everybody.”
Maria Kanellis-Bennett says Women’s Wrestling Army is partnering with Women’s Wrestling Revolution Plus (WWR+) and Beyond Wrestling for its first show. It will be held at the Fete Music Hall in Providence, Rhode Island on Sunday, May 1.
Kanellis-Bennett noted she is a longtime fan of the venue and feels it fits the aesthetic she’s seeking for the new promotion.
“There’s a vibe that this thing has to have,” Kanellis-Bennett stated. “And I hope we’re able to capture it. But (Beyond Wrestling founder) Drew (Cordeiro) had the right vibe with WWR+ and has the right vibe with Beyond Wrestling. And they’re our partner through all of this.
“They’ve been tremendous so far. Will they be our partners moving forward? I don’t know. We gotta see how this first one goes. But I think that what Drew does is great and what he’s done for women’s wrestling is awesome.”
Kanellis-Bennett indicated plans are already in the works for a future Women’s Wrestling Army show in Chicago.
Women’s Wrestling Army made its first talent announcement this morning, revealing Trish Adora will be part of its first event. Maria Kanellis-Bennett said she expects to also bring some talent from AEW and Impact Wrestling into her new promotion.
“We’re not gonna announce everybody,” Kanellis-Bennett said. “We want people to be excited and surprised. We’ve got a few tricks up our sleeves right now.”
US Army Veteran and Pan-Afrikan World Diaspora Wrestling Champion @trishadora202 has joined the Women’s Wrestling Army!!!
— WomensWrestlingArmy (@WWrestlingArmy) April 20, 2022
— WomensWrestlingArmy (@WWrestlingArmy) April 14, 2022
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