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Jonny Fairplay Interview

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Jonny Fairplay Interview

Jonny Fairplay

courtesy of Ring of Honor
I had the opportunity to talk to Jonny Fairplay in April 2008, a few weeks before his return to Ring of Honor wrestling. Jonny is most famous for making people think his grandmother was dead on the show Survivor. However, he is not a reality TV star looking to use professional wrestling to prolong his fame. As you will read in this interview, Jonny has a true passion for the business and even named his daughter after a WWE Hall of Famer.

Eric: On May 10th, you will be part of a Ring of Honor event. What do you plan on doing at the show and how long are you going to be involved with the company for?
Jonny Fairplay: I am coming as a guest of my good friend Larry Sweeney. He is going to be doing the Larry Sweeney show. As to my involvement, I don’t know. The last time I was there I was just catching up with Larry and of course I had Nigel McGuinness giving me the jawbreaker lariat and receiving a concussion. So, what I have planned this time may not be what some of the other Ring of Honor guys have planned. With Jonny Fairplay you never know.

Eric: There are many rumors about you on the Internet and I was hoping that you could clear up a few for me. Is it true that before you appeared on Survivor that you owned a wrestling promotion in Oregon?
Jonny: Yes. I ran New Dimension Wrestling. I wrote the storylines, produced it, directed it, sold advertising, worked in editing, and was the heel commentator alongside my good friend Jim Valley who did play-by-play.

Eric: Is it true that you were a passenger in the car accident that almost killed Roddy Piper?
Jonny: No. I was actually the driver. It’s also true that my daughter, Piper, is named after “Rowdy” Roddy Piper. So I guess everything is cool on that end.

Eric: Did you join the cast of Survivor as a way to further your wrestling career?
Jonny: No. They found me at a gas station and the casting director asked me to be on the show. I had never seen the show. So I did some homework and basically I went on to create the character Jonny Fairplay. Make that character the biggest bad guy in the history of television and keep that character on television as long as possible. So, I’m pretty sure I did good on all counts.

Eric: How did you get started with TNA Wrestling and what was your favorite memory there?
Jonny: I received a call from both WWE and TNA after Survivor and TNA knew where to put the decimal points. Honestly, just hanging out with so many guys that I just idolized like Raven who was just such a huge influence to the character of Jonny Fairplay. So being able to sit in the locker room with him and just you know stealing from his mind was just such a huge deal for me.

Eric: What led to your leaving TNA?
Jonny: I had a two year contract and I had worked all my dates. Right now, I’m currently in negotiations to go back to TNA. According to my sources, things are looking good so you never know. I have the big Survivor finale May 11 in New York and I saw that Ring of Honor was going to be at the Hammerstein Ballroom on the 10th, so I gave Gabe [Gabe Sapolsky is the booker of Ring of Honor] a call. I’m a huge fan of professional wrestling in general but Ring of Honors product is just something that since the demise of the ECW that most people remember I really love the product that Ring of Honor produces. So to be a part of that and help those guys in any way possible is just something that I couldn’t turn down the opportunity.

Eric: Joel Anderson, one of the contestants on Survivor has recently appeared on TNA? Did you have anything to do with that and do you know what they have planned for him?
Jonny: I introduced Joel to Dixie Carter [TNA President] and the creative team at TNA Wrestling. I know that he has been doing some training and from all accounts he is picking it up extremely quickly. He does have an amateur boxing background and he was a collegiate wrestler. So the athletic ability, the guy is 6’6”, he was definitely made for it. From the people he has been training with, he has a really high learning curve to the sport. So I would expect to see Joel anytime.

Eric: What were your thoughts about WWE Diva’s Ashley Massaro and her appearance on Survivor?
Jonny: I’ve heard nothing but horrible things about her. I’ve heard she was a pain in the a** as both a fellow contestant and production wise. I’m not surprised. From the reports I’ve read about her in WWE, she has been nothing but a headache there as well.

Eric: The last time people saw you, you asked to be voted off Survivor because you were about to be a father. Since then your daughter Piper was born I was wondering how fatherhood is treating you?
Jonny: So far it is great. I’ve been on the road a lot with the new Survivor. My face time with the public has been renewed so it’s just been filming, filming, filming. I have a pilot for HBO I’m shooting in a couple of weeks. I’ve just finished two other reality shows. So the time I’ve had to spend with my little girl has been awesome. I’m just looking for a little more of it.

Eric: Is there anything else you’d like my readers to know?
Jonny: If you think that Survivor is tough just see if I can survive the Hammerstein Ballroom May 10th, Ring of Honor.

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