May 24, 2016

Cameron Talks WWE Release, Her IWC Twitter Statement, Wrestling Future, Getting Scammed, More

A recent episode of “The Steve Austin Show” features former WWE Diva, and recently-released Superstar, Ariane Andrews AKA “Cameron.”

Steve Austin welcomes Ariane “Cameron” Andrews to 316 Gimmick Street for an in-person interview with his fellow Southern Californian. They begin by discussing Cameron’s entrée to the business, as part of a Total Diva’s Casting Call in 2011. She says that she was very open with producers, and told them that she wasn’t a wrestling fan, but felt she had what it took to make it in the competition. When the producers learned Cameron had an extensive track-and-field career throughout high school, as well as a BA in business arts and psychology, they put her on the fast track for another WWE reality show—Tough Enough. Steve was actually the host of that season of Tough Enough, and says he felt he was exceptionally hard on the competitors. He had a particularly infamous run-in with Cameron; he asked her what her favorite wrestling match was, and she couldn’t stammer-out an answer. She was the first person cut from that season, and was subsequently sent to FCW for refinement. She says she had a ton of heat when she arrived in FCW, but took it upon herself to work harder so as to prove herself worthy of the opportunity. She says she looks back at her early days and cringes at some of the things she was attempting to do. Norman Smiley had to take Cameron to the side one day and explain that learning to wrestle is a day-by-day commitment, and nobody is going to be ring-ready after just one or two days of training. She says she feels that she’s grown a lot because of the business; she’s both physically and mentally stronger, adding that she’s also more humble than she was prior to wrestling.

Steve brings up Cameron’s recent release from the WWE, and asks her to explain what happened and if she saw it coming. She says, “Yes and no,” and follows up with, “It’s a long story—do we have enough time?” Steve says she has all the time in the world, and she continues on to talk about the Ryback controversy. She brings up the Tweet and subsequent Re-Tweet that sparked controversy, wherein Ryback spilled his heart and Cameron replied: “Amen Brother.” She clarifies that she wasn’t speaking in reference to his comment about pay, but more so to the overall message that people need to believe in themselves. She says that she was sitting home collecting a paycheck because WWE didn’t have anything for her. She didn’t like it, and requested the chance to go down to NXT and work on “perfecting her craft.” She says she was pitching ideas and knew there was something for her, but she kept coming up short. She pauses, and says she’s getting emotional thinking about it. She pauses for—no exaggeration whatsoever—20 seconds to cry. Steve Austin becomes noticeably uncomfortable, and it sounds as though he’s handing her a tissue. Or perhaps a Broken Skull IPA. She continues to say that just because she didn’t grow up watching wrestling doesn’t mean she doesn’t have a passion for the industry. She says, “You can’t be in this business and not love it, and people just don’t get that.” She says she was excited to return to the main roster to show people what she’s learned and how she’s been able to grow, but was never given that opportunity. She mentions the controversy she caused when she lashed out at the “Internet Wrestling Community.” She says wrestling fans are incredibly loyal and those words were only directed toward people who’ve “wished death on her family and made racial remarks.”

Steve asks how she reacted to the news when she was released. She cuts him off with a laugh, “No, I was fired. I wasn’t released. I was FIRED.” She says she always watches the “internet news blogs” very closely, and saw—on Thursday night—rumors that WWE talents were going to be released on Friday. She stayed close to her phone on Friday morning because she had a feeling it would be her. When she was finally contacted, she says the news didn’t really faze her. She mentions that she and her boyfriend recently broke up, and that she was duped into making a substantial investment that turned out to be a scam. She says bad news was compacting on top of more bad news, and getting fired from WWE was just another unfortunate event. Steve asks what Cameron is looking to do now that she’s no longer employed by WWE. She mentions being enrolled in acting classes and wanting to pursue a career in film or television. She says she’s torn, however, because she feels that she “still has more wrestling to prove.” Spending so much time in NXT with nowhere to display her abilities has left her hungry for more in-ring competition. Steve asks why she’s torn, and she says she doesn’t want to regress by working for anyone beneath the WWE. She says—“with no offense to smaller promotions”—that WWE is the “be-all-end-all.” After working for the biggest promotion in the world, she doesn’t want to work for local independents or lesser known televised products. “I look at myself and I value myself at a certain level,” she says, “And I want to keep it that way.”

They move onto talking about Cameron’s time on WWE Total Divas. She says she was with the program for three years, and Steve admits that he really likes the show and it presents the WWE Superstars in a very glamourous light. She says she enjoyed the opportunity and exposure, but didn’t appreciate some of the reality TV tactics taken to present her as a villain. She says there were a lot of shots taken out of context, and feels it only served to further demonize her in the eyes of the fans. Steve asks what she does to unwind and have fun. She says she considers herself a workaholic and remains passionate about everything she works on. Steve asks if any of her friends from WWE reached out once the news broke about her release. She says she isn’t very close to anyone in WWE, which—she says—is one of the reasons she was probably released. She’s still very close with Eva Marie and Trinity Fatu AKA Naomi, and says they’ve been very supportive during this unnerving period.

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