Conrad Thompson is well known for hosting various podcasts such as Something to Wrestle with Bruce Prichard and 83 Weeks with Eric Bischoff. Thompson has also grown popular among wrestling fans for putting on the inaugural Starrcast convention last year, an event for wrestling fans that was held the same week as All In.
Starrcast returns this year during AEW's Double Or Nothing weekend, and Thompson promises that the roster of guests included will be even more stacked than last year. Thompson spoke with Wrestling Inc.'s Nick Hausman as a part of the WINCLY Podcast to discuss how he ultimately came to hosting this second event.
"I've run businesses for a long time, and you unfortunately get in the habit of trying to focus on what you're not doing well and what you can do better, and you're so far in the forest that you can't see the trees, to use a phrase," Thompson said. "But the reality is, when the dust sort of settled, I realized that the overwhelming response was incredibly positive and people were clamoring for another one. So, when I finished the first one, nobody really knew that All Elite Wrestling was going to be a thing. All In really felt like a one off and I just didn't want to really piggyback a WWE event. And I certainly didn't want to compete with WrestleCon, there sort of a brand for WrestleMania at this point. I thought, this was hard and I learned a lot of lessons, and it was a miserable weekend for me, and they're never doing another All In. It's safe to say I'm never doing this again. And then, All Elite Wrestling happened and here we are, Starrcast 2."
Thompson explained that both WrestleCon and Starrcast 2 are essentially going for the same concept, when a large pro wrestling event is in town, they take advantage and offer another entertaining service to the fans nearby. Thompson simply sees this as another opportunity to get fans involved with their favorite performers, as well as the performers they are not yet familiar with.
"It's no different than what they do with WrestleCon," Thompson explained. "They allow all those guys to appear at WrestleCon and this is literally no different. WrestleCon is built around WrestleMania, WrestleCon doesn't show up in Roanoke, Virginia, it shows up the weekend of WrestleMania in the host city for WrestleMania. Starrcast shows up whenever Cody & The Young Bucks put on a super show. If Cody & The Young Bucks are putting on a PPV and they're interested in having Starrcast, I'm gonna be there not as their official partner, not as any sort of financial partnership whatsoever, just as someone who sees the opportunity and recognizes, hey, these guys are putting on a big show? Fans are coming, so let's service them, but let's maybe take an opportunity to introduce Cody & The Bucks to some lapsed fans, to use a phrase."
Thompson & Prichard's podcast inspired a show on the WWE Network, named, Something Else To Wrestle With, and it involves the duo discussing all of the latest happenings in the world of professional wrestling. Although there hasn't been much word since season one ended last year, Thompson assured Wrestling Inc. that WWE definitely wants to film another season.
"[WWE] definitely wants to do another one," Thompson revealed. "We didn't even film any episodes last year until late April, early May, so, that's what we're looking at again this year. They definitely want to do more stuff with us, and you'll probably be hearing and reading more about that very soon. But I'm not going to necessarily share yet. When I first signed my contract with WWE last year, there's an inclusion in there for Starrcast. They know I'm doing Starrcast. The approved Starrcast in the background of Something Else To Wrestle With. I drank out of a Starrcast cup on Something Else To Wrestle With. They know that I'm promoting Starrcast and they're not opposed to it."
Thompson also mentioned how excited he was for the roster of Stars they'll be featuring at Starrcast 2, especially considering that they're including nearly every individual Thompson had in mind. With the recent news that he's now doing public appearances and bookings, Thompson addressed the idea of The Undertaker showing up at Starrcast this year.
"With [a few] exceptions, I got everybody I wanted," Thompson said. "There will be a lot of star power at Starrcast 2. And I started with, hey, let me make a list of everybody that wasn't available for the first one, for whatever reason, and let me try to book those guys. I was successful in doing so. Hypothetically, if Undertaker were at Starrcast, that would be a pretty big deal, huh? But realistically, it would be a big deal if, like, Mick Foley was there, or Edge & Christian were there, or Hulk Hogan was there, or Steve Austin was there. There's so many stars that weren't available, for whatever reason, at the first Starrcast. I'm swinging for the fences here! And we've already cracked the bat on Sting, and Bret Hart, and more to come."
Starrcast II will be taking place in Las Vegas from May 23-26. A pre-sale starts on Feb. 12 and tickets for the general public will go on sale Feb. 15. You can find out more information here.