-While the Greatest Royal Rumble in Saudi Arabia featured many prominent returns, the return the Saudi government wanted the most, the return of Hulk Hogan, came very close to happening but was ultimately nixed by WWE.
With Saudi Arabia spending so much money on the Greatest Royal Rumble, WWE tried to accommodate as many of the requests as possible. WWE put up no fight over women being banned from participating in the event. However, WWE very delicately tried to get Saudi Arabia to understand that a poorly received return of Hulk Hogan could be a black eye on an event designed to paint Saudi Arabia in the greatest light possible.
One of the reasons so much talent was added to the event was to try to make good for disappointing Saudi Arabia by not delivering Hulk Hogan and the Saudis have been assured that once WWE feels the temperature is right to bring Hogan back that he will appear at the next Saudi event after his return. It was close enough to happening that Hogan has told friends he'll be shocked if he's not back in WWE by the end of the year.
-Problems continue for new Lucha Libre themed US-based wrestling start-up Arolucha. While Konnan and Rey Mysterio continue to be two of the faces of the company, Mysterio is only committed to the first season, which may never even find a television home, and then plans to return to WWE full time. Konnan just returned to AAA in Mexico and they have asked him to reduce his role in Arolucha.
Vince Russo was asked to take a pay cut as the company has very little going on at the moment and when he refused, he was fired. The Harris brothers continue to run the company but have told friends that getting a television deal has proven far more difficult than they envisioned.
Hispanic networks that might be interested in lucha libre prefer authentic lucha and English networks that might be
interested in American wrestling prefer a product more in line with that expected of a US company, leaving Arolucha in no man's land.
-Bruno Sammartino may have passed away a couple of weeks ago, but the long dormant film project based on his life story may be showing some promise for the first time in a long time.
WWE Studios, which had serious interest in the movie fives year ago when Sammartino was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, is once again looking into acquiring the rights and finally getting the picture made.
When WWE Studios first explored the project years ago, the idea was that the movie would be released straight to DVD, but now there is talk of a version with a bigger budget that could possibly be released in theaters.
Films can sit in developmental purgatory for years or even decades, but for the first time in many years, WWE is actively pursuing the project again and Vince McMahon and Triple H are both in agreement that they should acquire the rights, whether they ultimately end up making the movie or not.
-Not only were the women told that they would be paid for the show even though they did not work. Sami Zayn will also be cut a nice check for the show.
WWE is returning to Saudi in November as part of a long-term deal to their government. WWE second-quarter earnings will tell us the actual numbers WWE is getting paid which could be as high as 25 million pure show, totaling north of 200 million when it is all said and done including some sort of local wrestling tv program. Sudi also paid all expenses for travel, lodging, accommodations, as well as food, for any company employee. Most told me it was odd however they were treated like royalty there.