wrestling / News

Dark Side of the Ring’s Evan Husney on Finding the Right Balance Between Truth and Appreciation, If There Are Any Ideas For Season 3

March 31, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Dark Side of the Ring

Speaking with Jeffrey Harris for the 411 Wrestling Interviews podcast, Dark Side of the Ring producer Evan Husney discussed how he and director Jason Eisener managed to strike a balance between taking an honest look at the wrestling industry while still remaining a show for fans to appreciate the business. Husney and Eisener have been wrestling fans since they were kids and still very much are today, and he talked about how they factored that into their approach while digging into the behind the scenes stories.

Husney also talked about whether there were any ideas for season two that they couldn’t finish which could carry over into season three, the way their Dino Bravo episode carried over into season two from their first season plans. You can check out some highlights below, as well as the full audio:

On finding a balance between taking an honest look at the industry while still being respectful: “Yeah. I mean, that’s always been our hope. You know, we definitely have always been huge fans. Jason and I have grown up as huge fans of wrestling, we’re still obsessed with wrestling to this day. All the action figures we buy on a weekly basis, you know. [chuckles] We’re still very active into being wrestling fans every day. And for us, you know, that’s what got us into this, I mean really. And that’s what kind of guides us is just our passion for wrestling in making this show.

“That being said, just as wrestling fans are — especially hardcore wrestling fans — we’re just as fascinated with the behind-the-scenes aspects as most are. And that’s what else drove us into wanting to make the show, just being so fascinated with the behind-the-scenes aspect of it. Because you know, there is drama that happens in the ring that’s on the page, but then there’s also this other dramatic, emotional world that happens outside of the ring. And for us it was, like, wanting to really explore that human side. And the more interviews we did in season one, especially with family members. We’d always find that hearing from family members that haven’t really gotten their voices heard or haven’t really put their voices out there. That seems to always be some of the more fascinating material And so for us, it was like this constant journey in exploring the human side of all this world that we love. Because it is so fascinating, and wrestlers — you know, they risk so much for this form of entertainment. Just stepping into the ring, like, I’ll admit. I’ve taken a few bodyslams over the course of making this show, and every time, I just can’t believe that this is what a lot of these guys put themselves through. And so for us it was just like trying to balance and show just really what the rise is, and the human side of all of this. Because there is so much to this world that’s so unique to wrestling. It’s really unlike any other form of entertainment or sport, or otherwise.”

On if they had any episodes that didn’t come together for season two that may be part of a third season: [laughs] “Oh man, it’s so hard to start thinking about season three. Just in the fact that we’re still finishing season two. But now, I can’t think of like one particular story that didn’t come together. There definitely were fallback stories that we had in place if you know — you just never know if you’re gonna get access to a story in order to tell it in the best possible way. But we were fortunate enough that with the episodes we really wanted to tell and the ones we wanted to explore, at the end of the day we were able to get pretty much everybody on board for what became season two. And you know, with season one, it was a different experience because we were supposed to make more episodes for season one. But then the order by the network was shortened, so we had to kind of put a couple episodes on the shelf. Which thankfully, we’ve now been able to finish. So nothing that really we started work on that we weren’t able to finish this time around.”

In the full interview, Husney talks about the reaction to the season two premiere, taking a different approach to the Chris Benoit episode, working with Martha Hart on the upcoming Owen Hart episode, if they have any ideas for season three episodes and more.

Dark Side of the Ring Season 2 is currently airing on Tuesday nights on VICE TV. The next episode, “The Life and Crimes of New Jack,” debuts on Tuesday, March 31.

And if you’re enjoying all of our recent interviews with names like Chris Jericho, Gail Kim, Alexander Hammerstone, Mance Warner, Lance Archer, and Ken Shamrock and want to support us getting more interviews with big names in wrestling, please leave us a 5 star review on Apple Podcasts, it only takes a few seconds to do and really helps us out!

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit the 411 Wrestling Interview Podcast on 411mania.com and please embed our podcast player or YouTube video.

0:00: Introduction
0:15: On his reaction to the response to the Chris Benoit-focused season premiere
1:16: On how important it was to get David Benoit and Sandra Toffoloni’s story told in the Benoit episode
2:18: On the episode’s different approach to the Benoit story
3:53: On the presentation having a different feel in season two, making the Benoit episode feel more intimate
5:18: On David Benoit’s sister and mother not being in the episode
6:18: On not making the docuseries a hitpiece on professional wrestling while still taking an honest look at the industry
9:49: On whether they had any episodes that didn’t come together for season two that they’re considering for a possible third season
11:41: On getting Martha Hart to agree to work with them on the Owen Hart episode

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