WWE and Netflix teamed up for a new film titled "The Main Event." The story centers around a young wrestling fan who finds a mask that gives him powers, propelling him to WWE stardom.
In the film, wrestlers such as The Miz, Kofi Kingston, Keith Lee, and Otis make cameo appearances. The Miz and Kofi Kingston play themselves while Lee and Otis play wrestlers under different names and gimmicks.
Director Jay Karas spoke to Screen Rant, discussing his dealings with the wrestlers who star in the film.
"I mean, The Miz has been in films before, but for a lot of them, it was their first filming experience outside of the actual wrestling stuff that they do. So these guys are performers. They go out in front of a crowd, they’re performing, and it is acting in putting on a performance. But in terms of the mechanics of being on a single camera film environment, and also in terms of delivering specific comedy, it was a learning curve, but it was so quick because again, they’re athletes, and they’re performers. So anything that they didn’t know, they got in like three seconds. In terms of getting the comedy, we would just have very specific conversations about what the tone of the joke was, and they were all very direct-able."
He continued, "Keith Lee, for example, who plays Smooth Operator, this was his first experience doing something like this, and he’s such a natural on camera. He comes across so wonderfully, and I feel like there’s a lot of heart between the characters of Smooth Operator and Leo. And in terms of him delivering the comedy, we would rehearse a scene, and we would talk about, and if there was a different version of a read that I wanted, I would just explain to Keith what I wanted to do. He would turn around and deliver. It was an open dialogue, just like with any actor. I always started by treating them like their experienced actors, they start there, and I just talk to them like I would any other actor, and then I can very quickly assess any areas where they might need any additional help, additional direction, and then I would see if I could sort of fill in the gaps from there. But they all delivered great performances, and I think they’re super funny. There’s one Keith Lee ad-lib when they first get to the tryouts and he all of a sudden smells the stinky mask, like, “Oh, what smells like old bus seats?” That was Keith Lee’s line that he brought in. We had a different line originally scripted, but that was his line, and I always try to create an environment like that if actors have an idea, an alternate version of the line that might be funnier, if we have time, let’s try it."
"The Main Event" is currently available to stream on Netflix.
You can check out The Distraction's review of the film by clicking here.