Vince McMahon Smacks Down a Wrestling Picture

  • Share
  • Read Later
TV wrestling is more about huge audiences than high art. So when World Wrestling Federation chairman Vince McMahon pulled the plug on commercials for a controversial wrestling documentary that were scheduled to air during UPN's "SmackDown!" and USA Network's "Sunday Night Heat" and "Raw Is War," the movie's producers sensed a bid to kill their film. Imagine Entertainment says McMahon has a case of sour grapes because it wouldn't let him buy "Beyond the Mat," which was nominated for a Director's Guild award in the Best Director category. A WWF spokesman claims it's a publicity stunt, and the company has a policy of not airing "third-party" wrestling events during scheduled matches. So why did the WWF agree to promote the film in the first place? And why did McMahon not only give full access to the filmmaker but also appear in the film? Whatever his motives, McMahon's got muscle. With rumors flying that CBS is trying to woo the WWF, USA Network and UPN aren't likely to risk provoking McMahon.