WWE proudly boasts every time a celebrity so much as negatively tweets about Roman Reigns. Even better if that celebrity tweets something positively about Roman Reigns and the company learns that person is a fan, at which point WWE would likely start reaching out to the celebrity and ask them to make an appearance on Raw. Celebrity involvement and mainstream appeal are two of the things WWE strives for most, but interestingly, for the majority of instances where they had a celebrity in their midst working behind-the-scenes, the company policy was to never mention it on television.
Most of these celebrities had duties in wrestling that were wildly different from their public persona, which could be why whatever wrestling company they were working for didn’t feel the need to mention it. In most cases, that company was WWE, but a few of these celebrities have even worked major roles in smaller companies without too much attention drawn to them, as well. It’s worth noting almost all of these celebs carry at least a little bit of controversy with them, especially insofar as their involvement with wrestling. If you want to know who risked their fame to help out the McMahon family, but didn’t even want the credit, read on and learn about 10 celebrities who were involved with professional wrestling from behind-the-scenes.
10 The Insane Clown Posse - JCW Owners
Fans of the Attitude Era probably have negative memories of ICP’s time in front of the screen on wrestling shows, but they have just as much history backstage, only in a company where way less people are watching. Although not nearly as popular as their stints in WWE or WCW, the Insane Clown Posse still make rare wrestling appearances for Juggalo Championship Wrestling, a company the two founded, own, and operate by themselves.
9 Wesley Snipes - Signed To WWE Films
Wesley Snipes is an actor best known for his roles in Blade, Demolition Man, and New Jack City. Snipes initial involvement with professional wrestling came during the filming of Blade: Trinity, a film he starred in and featured a minor character played by Triple H. Blade: Trinity was a huge financial success, but it also marked the beginning of the end of Wesley Snipes' career, as rumors of him being difficult to work with were running rampant during the film’s much delayed release. Making matters worse, shortly after the film finally saw said release, Snipes was arrested and eventually convicted for willfully failing to file income taxes.
8 Jason Hervey - WCW and TNA Producer
Jason Hervey was a child actor best known for his role as Wayne Palmer on The Wonder Years. He also had minor roles in major films such as Back to the Future and Pee-wee’s Big Adventure. These roles obviously came when Hervey was extremely young, and rumor has it by the time his 18th birthday came around he was actually dating wrestling legend Missy Hyatt. While still on The Wonder Years, Hervey appeared on the first and fifteenth Clash of the Champions for WCW.
7 Jimmy Savile - UK Wrestling Guest Booker
With the benefit of hindsight, it’s hard to see Jimmy Savile as anything but a monster, but part of that is due to the incredible celebrity he built through years of hosting children’s shows for the BBC. Savile was the host of Jim’ll Fix It and Top of the Pops, with a side job of raising a legendary amount of money for charity. In a twist that years later still feels like something out of a psychological thriller, after Savile’s death, so many people came forward accusing him of sexual misconduct that he was eventually designated by the NSPCC as one of the most prolific pedophiles in history.
6 Donald Trump - WWE Host and Sponsor
Donald Trump is a WWE Hall of Famer, so most fans of wrestling or of Trump are probably aware he’s made a couple appearances in WWE. What you may not realize is Trump’s contributions to WWE history extend far beyond his appearances on television. The Donald first started making appearances on Raw circa 2007, but his involvement in WWE goes back to the late 80’s, with a couple of the first few WrestleMania’s.
5 Billy Corgan - TNA Writer/Producer
Billy Corgan is the lead singer, guitarist, and songwriter for the 90’s alternative rock band Smashing Pumpkins. Since April of 2015, he has also been one of the Senior Producers of Total Nonstop Action. This has not in any way affected his tour schedule or output as a musician, which may not be as prolific as it once was, but is still busy enough to make it really tough to take on a full-time second job as one of the most important figures in the second largest wrestling company in America.
4 Bob Mould - WCW Writer
Bob Mould is a guitarist and singer-songwriter famous for his work with the bands Sugar and the legendary Hüsker Dü. Although neither of his bands produced any radio hits, almost all of Mould’s music is highly critically acclaimed and well respected amongst music fans. Somewhere amongst Mould’s fans was Jesse Ventura, which eventually lead him to a friendship with an executive working for Ted Turner, and as a favor to Mould, that executive got him a job in the WCW writer’s room in late 1999.
3 Chris Kreski - WWE Head Writer
Chris Kreski is only a celebrity on a very minor scale, but his immediate impact on WWE during his time there dwarves that of almost everyone on this list. While most of us hear “celebrity” and think “big time movie star,” authors, producers, and writers all earn a certain degree of celebrity from their work as well, at least if that work is successful or particularly good. Kreski spent a little bit of time in front of the camera, too, but he made his true mark on the world as a producer of a variety of MTV programs during the early 90’s and as one of the first head writers of The Daily Show. While working for MTV, Kreski also appeared in a variety of commercials for the network, and had his name plastered throughout bookstores as the co-author of a number of high profile celebrity biographies.
2 Patrice O'Neal - WWE Writer
Patrice O’Neal was one of the greatest and most respected stand-up comedians of his generation. He was also an actor and appeared in TV shows including The Office, Chappelle’s Show and Arrested Development. For a few short weeks near the year 2000, Patrice was a writer for WWE, as well. In an odd twist of fate, by hiring one of the best comedians in the world as a writer, WWE simultaneously offered an explanation towards why their brand of comedy always seems out-of-touch and borderline offensive.
1 Freddie Prinze, Jr. - WWE Director, Writer, and Producer
Quite possibly the most famous person to be a long-term tenured employee of WWE behind-the-scenes is none other than Freddie Prinze, Jr. Prinze is a world famous film actor as the star of I Know What You Did Last Summer, She’s All That, and Scooby-Doo amongst countless others. Prinze has also worked for WWE at least twice, first as a writer and creative consultant, and later as a director and producer. The relationship apparently began when Prinze attended WrestleMania and a “lady who worked for the company” began asking him what he liked and disliked about the show. Although Prinze apparently doesn’t know who that lady was, she then introduced him to Stephanie McMahon, who apparently hired him on the spot.
Prinze was responsible for a great deal of action in WWE during his tenure there, and he most proudly reflects on the fact he pitched the idea that led to Jeff Hardy winning the WWE World Championship. Unfortunately, the demands of a professional wrestler are apparently even more strenuous than the demands of an actor, and Prinze immediately quit WWE after witnessing Steve Austin tell an aspiring wrestler that no superstar ever won Parent of the Year. It's noble Prinze wanted to be a better parent, but then again, superstars don’t typically win Teen Choice Awards, either.
Sources: WWE, GQ
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