No, HBO hasn't joined the ranks of USA and SciFi in broadcasting the weekly exploits of World Wrestling Entertainment superstars -- the wrestling they're gonna be showing is of the decidedly old-school variety. Their newest drama series, Everybody Hurts, will focus on a family that runs a professional wrestling organization in New York City in the 1970s, back when wrestling was a regional sport, and Andy Kaufman had to go to Memphis to fight Jerry Lawler. Think Hogan Knows Best meets Six Feet Under. It'll be written by The Riches scribe Aaron Blitzstein, who watched regional shows as a child in Baltimore and New York and later did marketing for World Championship Wrestling. (Hopefully, it will be better-written than most WCW storylines. Also, we hope it uses the REM song of the same name as its opening theme.)
The timing couldn't be better. Darren Aronofsky's next film, The Wrestler, has been receiving rave reviews on the festival circuit as well as award talk for star Mickey Rourke. So come next year, the dirty glamour of pro wrestling will be on everybody's mind. And family dynamics are already the rage in wrestling -- just look at the number of storylines that involve the WWE's McMahon family. Vince McMahon Jr. bought out his dad's stake in the original Northeast-based World Wide Wrestling Federation, turning it into a juggernaut, and now he, his wife Linda, his daughter Stephanie and his son Shane both run the company and also star in a lot of the storylines. Might they even be the inspiration for the series? They are based out of Stamford, Conn., which, while not New York, is well within the greater tri-state area.
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