This past Tuesday, I had a chance to chat with an amazing woman, who contributed a great deal to the wrestling world. She has often been called â<80>~The Ninth Wonder of the Worldâ<80><99>. She was the first woman ever hold the WWF(now known as the WWE) Intercontinental Championship(which she held three times during her career), and she also held the WWF Womenâ<80><99>s Championship. She was apart of one of the most popular stables in WWF/WWE history, that being DX. She has posed for Playboy twice and made numerous television appearances along with being on reality shows. Though she has been called to Hollywood, she still remains in the hearts of millions of wrestling fans all around the world. Today, you will get to meet the famous Chyna.
Melissa: Chyna, thank you so much for spending some time with our WrestleZone viewers, and letting us know what you have been up to, as well as giving us a look into your past wrestling career and letting us know what you are doing now. And it is a true honor having you with us.
Chyna: Well thank you for having me, Melissa.
Melissa: Letâ<80><99>s talk a little bit about your television and movie career. How have you found that your acting career has differed from your wrestling career?
Chyna: Well, I would say that my first plans, ever since I was a little girl, was to be a movie star. And I wont go into the drama of being an abandoned child, but obviously I think the world knows that I grew up in a dysfunctional family. I spent a lot of my time in after school activities, such as music and extracurricular activities such as reading, which allowed me to work on more school work. And I did a lot of intramurals, which I wasnâ<80><99>t really good at, but I ran around and kind of tried everything. And I always wanted to be movie star and I ended up in wrestling. I saw it on television on day, many years later and I said, â<80>~well, I will try thatâ<80><99>. After I had already started developing my body in sports and spending hours at the gym. And people would clap, the guys would come up and clap when I would do something at the gym. And the whole time I didnâ<80><99>t know that I would developing my body and becoming this kind of sculpturedâ<80>¦ I wanted to be Terminator 4. And thatâ<80><99>s how it all started. And I didnâ<80><99>t happen to know that I was going to end up fitting wrestling, but once I started, I think all the intramurals came together and somehow, I guess by nature that is what was going to be. What happened after that was, I became this character, this wrestler, this woman as Chyna. So after the wrestling career, it was hard going into show business, itâ<80><99>s like Shaquille Oâ<80><99> Neal going in and playing some dramatic role. Which I still think I can do, and I plan on going for, but to most of the world, I am still that wrestler Chyna. So, I have that push and pull type of thing where I am very proud of that, thatâ<80><99>s why I fought for my name, what I did was absolutely incredible. And I will and forever will be Chyna and I will never let that go. And that would be through the reality world with doing reality shows. Through maybe kind of the evolution of acting, to get into acting more that way. Which would lead to number one: I get an incredible role that just comes from out of left field and I knock it out of the park. Or Number two: I do some fun appearances, like ones that The Rock has done in movies or I get an opportunity to do some action movies. I am still very physically fit and I spend a lot of time in the gym. However, I donâ<80><99>t do what I used to do. But I am still a very incredibly fit woman and I try to keep up with myself. But that is where I am right now as far as the acting. But I still feel that I have that ability, itâ<80><99>s just that I became Chyna the wrestlerâ<80>¦ the interim.
Melissa: The most recent show that you were on this year was Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. And you actually spoke about you having a strained relationship with some of your family and also having a troubled childhood. Could you share some words of advice to people who have had a troubled childhood?
Chyna: Well, itâ<80><99>s a really tough world right now. When I began wrestling, I wanted to mostly do it for girls and women, to encourage them to be strong and confident women and let them know that they can do anything. And then it ended up being an incredible physical ability. And most people donâ<80><99>t know that behind the scenes, there was a whole lot of men that rallied behind me to really teach me. And then the show and the confidence combinedâ<80>¦ But it wasnâ<80><99>t many years until began coming around and saying, â<80><9c>Chyna, I love youâ<80> or â<80><9c> Chyna, you gave me the strength to do thisâ<80> or â<80><9c>Not to take that abuse from my husbandâ<80> or â<80><9c>I can go for whatever I want to doâ<80>. And that is what makes me feel the best in the world. So, I would say you just act out of love, reach for a star and act out of kindness not out of malice. Or if you want to inform the world or you really want to learn, then you just go for it. At the end of the day, I know that I am a good person, and I know that I have done some really great things and I have met some really people, and I would rather have that more then anything in the world. To a little boy or a little girl, I would have to say, get your education. Education is a wonderful gift, just be disciplined and you will have the ability to do anything you want. Stay away from drugs, they will do nothing but harm you and your life, as well as the people around you. And be strong and the cream will always rise to the top. Thatâ<80><99>s what I would say.
Melissa: When you were on Celebrity Rehab what realizations did you come to about yourself, while being on the show?
Chyna: Well, when I first went to Celebrity Rehab I figured this: I have been around a lot of people who have been on massive amounts of drugs, that I didnâ<80><99>t even realize existed. Number two, I think the perception of me was that I was a drug addict and I didnâ<80><99>t know what half of the people were talking about. Number three, I figured, â<80><9c>okay, I am going to go on television without the presence of alcohol or drugs or anything else around me, I am going to show everybody what the real me is, and I will let them come to their determinationâ<80>. And maybe me learning some coping mechanism, because everybody knows someone who is on drugs. So, I figured maybe I could be that example and go on there and learn some coping mechanism. Or maybe, kind of give myself a reality check in the face and say â<80><99>this could happen to you and you come to a fork in the roadâ<80><99>â<80>¦ It was a no lose situation. Behind the scenes, I was really disappointed in the face that what you didnâ<80><99>t see on television, they were trying to shove that down my throat. And I think that because it was a television show, their main objective was to get me to say that I was one of them at the end of the program. You didnâ<80><99>t get that opportunity to see that on television. And that kind of made me upset because I felt that if anyone was watching the show and they might even have a question about themselves and they didnâ<80><99>t have the pride or the willingness or go with an open mind and check it out. They missed the boat with me and so therefore I really feel I havenâ<80><99>t learned a whole lot from it Melissa. And I wanted to be much more of an example to people and unfortunately I feel like it ended up being more of a television show to be honest. But, I wish everyone well that did the show and I still have people that come up to me and say ,â<80>~I am going through that myselfâ<80><99> or what not. So, if it helps people out thatâ<80><99>s what matters and I am grateful for that.
Melissa: Over the course of your acting career and your celebreality debuts, have you formed close friendships with anyone?
Chyna: Close relationships? I would have to say no. They are acquaintances, I have tried to talk to Brigitte(from The Surreal Life) and I hope she is doing really well. No there is really not, you know, I have one girlfriend that has recently come around, and I have a good friend that lives across the way from me. And you know, I have done a lot of this on my own, I would not say that I have a whole lot of developed relationships. And itâ<80><99>s really important to have, but itâ<80><99>s been difficult, itâ<80><99>s tough. They get mad, they get jealous, they get overwhelmed or itâ<80><99>s hard for them to relate.
Melissa: Something else I would like to talk to you aboutâ<80>¦ What made you decide to pose for Playboy and what was the experience like for you?
Chyna: Posing for Playboy was a pinnacle and a change in my career. As I was becoming the jolly green giant, six foot two, it was the irony of being the most beautiful that I could possibly be as a feminine woman with some of the most beautiful women in the magazine. I was sort of tabbed as a monster, because of me wrestling as an athlete. This was completely opposite! They made me feel completely feminine, beautiful, and they complimented me. It was not anything pornographic or sexual to me, it was simply a showing of my femininity. I know it was very important to me at that point. Playboy gave me the ability to show the world that I was a woman, a very feminine and beautiful woman. And they were very fair to me business wise, and if it werenâ<80><99>t for Playboy, I would not have been in LA for the last almost nine years. Because that is where I actually had made my money and that was due to the fans through wrestling. You know, I am very grateful to Mr. Heffner and being about of that era. And this is a man in LA, when the WWE doesnâ<80><99>t open their doors to me, this man opens his door every Sunday and I can roll up and he will put food on my plate. And I am very grateful to have that, to have that opportunity. It was wonderful. I am trying to get on the stair stepper every night, so I can do a third cover(laughs).
Melissa: I want to talk to you a little bit about your wrestling career, if you donâ<80><99>t mind. You had an extremely successful career in the WWF, which is now known as the WWE. You were the first woman to ever hold the Intercontinental Championship. When you look back over your career in wrestling, what are your thoughts?
Chyna: It was incredible. I just think it was the most amazing experience and sometimes I get really mad, because I feel like that was taken away from me. But ultimately, I am so glad that I am Chyna and it was the most amazing experience that I will ever have. I will watch it and miss it and I will cry. I will just cry because it was so amazing.
Melissa: I would like to ask you, who do you consider to be the most dominate female currently in the WWE right now?
Chyna: You know, I donâ<80><99>t know because I really donâ<80><99>t watch it a whole lot. I just stay abreast of whose who and whatâ<80><99>s going on. I just hope that all the girls are being treated well, being paid well and that they are okay as well as being healthy. I know there is a whole league of women who can go out there and do their thing. But otherwise, I cant really answer that question.
Melissa: I am not really sure if you are aware of this or not. But a lot of WWE fans compare WWE Diva Beth Pheonix to be a modern day version of you. Now if you had the opportunity, maybe if it was just a one time thing, would you go up against her? And letâ<80><99>s just say you did, who do you think would end up being the victor in the match?
Chyna: I think pretty much all of those women know that I am the queen of wrestling. And I think that those days are over. Maybe she could be the new modern Chyna, who knows? But I think that those days are over and I would absolutely love to do a one timeâ<80>¦ be involved somehow with just something phenomenal. But I think the days of that career path and those times are over for me.
Melissa: What do you think is preventing that from happening?
Chyna: What do I think is preventing it? Well I think itâ<80><99>s a personal situation that happened many years ago and suddenly almost nine years have gone by. But I canâ<80><99>t really answer that. But I never have gotten a response on any of it from any other person.
Melissa: Well, do you think if Mr. McMahon asked you to come back and do a couple of shows, would you consider it?
Chyna: Absolutely, I would consider it. I would have to do some very deep thinking and it would have to be very worth my while. Because as you know, the wrong thing to do would be to go back to something that treated you so badly. Why would you do that? Thatâ<80><99>s an inappropriate example no matter what your cause is or for you personally. So, it would be something that I would have to seriously think about. But absolutely I would consider that.
Melissa: Well Chyna, thank you again for giving us a look into your life and we just wish you the best no matter what career path you choose.
Chyna: Thank you very much.
Chyna also added that she is currently working with Mike Esterman and booking appearances worldwide. If you are interested in booking Chyna for an appearance, please feel free to visit www.esterman.com . Also, a friend of hers from Ireland, Daniel Diver, is currently in the process of updating her website. She urges all of her fans, as well as wrestling fans to check out her website at www.9thwonderoftheworld.com .