Charlotte Flair: “I just didn’t see myself as a Diva”

Jul 21, 2019 - by James Walsh

In the latest episode of Chasing Glory, Charlotte Flair and Bayley spoke with Lilian Garcia from Ace Comic Con about the beginnings of their careers. Flair revealed that when she was growing up, she actually didn’t want to be a wrestler and was only talked into it to motivate her brother Reid. Later on, the two spoke about how Dusty Rhodes helped them to develop their characters while they were in NXT. Here are highlights:

Charlotte on if she wanted to be a wrestler like her dad: “Honestly, no. I always went to the shows and wanted to take my friends when I was in college, like you’re talking about, bringing my volleyball team, but seeing the women during that time period I just never, like Bayley, I played sports my whole life. I was a tomboy … not a tomboy but, I kind of was a tomboy, so I just didn’t see myself as Stacy Keibler or Torrie Wilson, Trish [Stratus] or Lita. So I was like, ‘Oh I’m athletic, I could do the moves.’ But I just didn’t see myself as a Diva. So I don’t know if that’s kind of why I didn’t really care about it.”

Charlotte on when she started taking an interest: “Not until 2012 when I was just living in Charlotte, personal training and we were at the Four Horsemen Hall of Fame induction for my dad. I was with my little brother [Reid Flair] and one of the producers and Johnny Laurinaitis at the time was like, ‘Why aren’t you doing this?’ And I think he just said it to me to kind of encourage my brother, to kind of light a fire under him to do what was needed to get into the company. So I was like, maybe if I do this, my brother will get on the right path and I can help him. So literally three months after that I reported to NXT having, yeah my dad was Ric Flair but I had no idea about the business. I didn’t even realize understand what my dad meant to the business until I got there. No, it’s true! I was like, ‘Why do these people not like me? What do they mean I’m just here because I’m Ric Flair’s daughter?’ When Bayley talks about us all being there at the right time, for me personally, not having a wrestling background, and being able to work Bayley, Sasha [Banks], Becky [Lynch] and them kind of showing me the ropes and showing all the passion that they brought in to being on the independent scene and wanting this from childhood and me being like, ‘whoa, what is this crazy world that I’ve been missing out on that I fit into?’ So really it was not until July 2012 that I was like, ‘Oh I like this.’”

Charlotte on if the wrestling was harder than she thought, how Dusty Rhodes helped with the character: “Absolutely not [laughs]. The wrestling part was fine. Like, I was scared of my own shadow. Literally, I’d get in the ring and I would shake. I didn’t have a character, I just didn’t know who I was. So performing and pretending to be someone and public speaking, like I was a ring announcer for the first six months. And then having random matches, though it really just took ring time with the girls and figuring out…I just had a lot of catching up to do. It was awesome. With all four of us, it was Dusty [Rhodes] finding something that was true to us, like something that was authentic and then making that larger than life. It first started with my athleticism and then the legacy so it was just believing in that confidence of, you know, you can carry yourself like a queen. You can see that in each one of our characters.”

Bayley on how Dusty helped them all: “It’s crazy because we try to hide our true self because we don’t think that’s good enough for our fans. ‘They’re not gonna really like me.’ But Dusty was like, ‘No! That’s what’s special to you. Who you really are. You’re athletic, your family, you’re royalty, you’re wrestling royalty.’ And the same with [me], he’s like, ‘You’re a fan. Make it larger than life.’ He just, we’re really just who we are and he made us feel confidence in ourselves and that’s when everything blew up. That’s when NXT blew up is when because Dusty made us see that. Dusty believed in everybody and who we really were, who we were afraid to show.

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