(FADEIN: Two men wrestling, the camera panning to show the tiny crowd, maybe 75 or so in attendance.)
V/O: It’s a sport where many chase a dream that few will reach.
(CUTTO: Another wrestling match, this time outdoors, again with a small crowd.)
V/O: Men and women of all ages, shapes and sizes competing against each other, but also competing to win the hearts of the crowd, and hopefully the eyes of a promoter from one of the bigger, more established leagues.
(CUTTO: A sign reading “WrestleVerse” CUTTO: “Triple X” Sean Stevens fighting JA and Rocko Daymon. CUTTO: Anarky and Copycat brawling.)
V/O: Empire Pro Wrestling is one of the biggest and most popular companies in the industry, it’s shows draw sell-outs in every part of America, it’s most recent Pay-Per-View, Russian Roulette, drew about one million buys.
(CUTTO: The First walking into his garage, he has one a stained grey hoodie and beaten up black jeans.)
V/O: The man who headlined that event, isn’t your typical muscle bounded mountain that you think of when you think of a wrestler.
(CUTTO: The First talking to the camera.)
FIRST: Yeah, my size has always been an issue my whole career, but I think the people really have turned away from looking for giant monsters who beat people to death, they want an underdog to rally behind, or if I’m going the other way, a sneaky little jerk who they want to see get his ass kicked. It’s all about telling a story about yourself that people want to hear, maybe it would be easier to do that if I had 50 more pounds of muscle on me, but maybe not, I’m who I am, and that is fine with me.
(CUTTO: First now under his car, a black Camry.)
V/O: The 27 year old Brian Nadolny, known to fans and family as The First, grew up around cars his whole life, his family business is that of car repair, Nadolny Repair and Gas has been open for over 40 years in Salem.
FIRST: My grandfather started the garage and my dad took it over, I figure my brother or sister will have it after me, I was working on break systems and doing oil changes since I was 14…I’ll never pay for an oil change, I don’t care if EPW or any company gave me 10 million dollars a year…This is my one breaking point, I will officially know I’ve become soft when I don’t have the time and ability to spend a few minutes changing oil instead of paying somebody twenty bucks to do it for me.
(CUTTO: The Space Needle.)
V/O: On the other coast of America, The First’s next opponent starts his day.
(CUTTO: Sledgehammer hitting a tire. The camera elevates slowly upward, zooms out slightly to show LAYNE WINTERS heaving up and slamming the tire again)
WINTERS V/O: People forgot my name after the injury. Tricep tore right off my arm, and suddenly I'm back on the couch...
(CUTTO: Winters sitting down, being interviewed in a local gym. His name appears on the bottom of the screen)
WINTER: ...eating, drinking, feeling sorry for myself. Man...lemme tell you, I'm STILL the guy who menaced Empire Pro for a year and a half, and I was this close (pinches fingers) from winning that title. And guess what? That guy got off the couch, got back in shape, and I'm feeling...the best I ever felt. This kid who calls himself champion... (looks into camera) that's right First, you're nothing but a boy. You couldn't beat me the first time we locked up, and with how my training's going, there's not a doubt in my mind, I WILL beat you and realize my dream.
(CUTTO: Downtown Salem. Camera crews standing by as The First is waiting to begin doing a promo for his match with Winters.)
V/O: For many wrestlers just having a camera crew show up is enough to begin doing promos for upcoming matches, but for The First it takes extra time.
(CUTTO: The First talking to the camera now fully made up.)
FIRST: The face paint takes about a half hour or so to get right, sometimes I can just throw it on and get it done in 20 minutes if I’m just doing a rush job, but to get it right you have to put some time in, sometimes I do stuff that’s really got details to it, like spider webs or what will you and that takes longer and usually I need help with it, today’s just some white and some black and call it a day, and I also have to figure out how much I’m going to dye my hair for a show, sometimes it just stays black, other times I get bored and throw a bunch of colors into it.
My look is just who I am, others comment on it more than I do, I mean it makes a statement and all that but it’s not the total of who I am, I’ve seen so many guys do this kind of look and this kind of attitude, but for the most part I feel like they are trying to force it, trying to really sell it as who they are, I don’t bother to do that, this is who I am, I don’t need to defend it.
I’d love to be a guy like Layne who can just roll out of bed and tell people that they suck and that’s that, but that’s not me, and I wouldn’t change who I am for anything, whatever time I have to put in to be ready to wrestle or talk or any of it, it’s worth it to me.
I know Layne thinks his dreams are coming true in that ring in Chicago…Well sometimes dreams turn out to be nightmares.
(CUTTO: Layne Winters in the ring training with a younger wrestler; Layne reverses a waistlock, hits a bridged german suplex. His training partner struggles to kick out while three seconds elapses. Finally he's out, and as he gets to his feet, Layne looks up and smiles)
V/O: While The First builds up the impending battle between the two men, Layne Winters continues his training at a local gym in his hometown of Seattle)
WINTERS: What was that, four? (laughs) Dave...Dave... (partner looks over, listens intently) You gotta drop your base. (Winters demonstrates) Drop your base, man. You're too upright. When you have that waistlock, Gable-grip and don't stay upright. Keep your waistline below his and either DRIVE HIM forward into the corner or on the ground...or bump him up onto your waist and...BAM, suplex him back.
DAVE: I thought with my height I should stay tall and kind of be like, menacing.
WINTERS: No, come on...you have to get lower, you know that. Tall guys, man, you ain't menacing without a base. Use your length on the ground, or when you're jabbing.
DAVE: Alright, cool.
(They slap five; Winters reels him in and throws an arm around him, looks into the camera)
WINTERS: This is where we train the next crop of killers. See this kid? In two years, Brian Nadalny's gonna be spitting his teeth out when Davey boy meets him in EPW. Then maybe he gets a shot at my title! (smiles, laughs)
V/O: Two men with very different histories and live, who shared a common past.
(CUTTO: Winters and First standing in the ring as members of HOPE.)
V/O: And common goal for their future.
(CUTTO: Camera does a slow sweep over First’s personalized EPW World Title Belt.)
V/O: We will follow the two men as they make their way to Chicago, to the United Center and their fight to decide who will be the EPW World Champion.
(CUTTO: EPW 24/7 Logo)