While at the Early to Rise: Women’s Wrestling Mini Convention in Berwynm Illinois, the folks at Ring The Belle caught up with Gail Kim for an in-depth interview. Featured below are some of the highlights.
On her opinion on the treatment of Asian talents in WWE: “When I see thee talented people like [Asuka, Kairi Sane, and Io Shirai] get hired, I do get worried for them. I just know what kind of talent they have, and it wouldn’t make sense to utilize their talent to the utmost degree, I mean that’s how you make your money right? I am worried about the stereotypes in the business because normally, not in all cases, but in a lot of cases, you see a lot of the ethnic minorities being grouped together because they really don’t know what else to do. When I was in WWE, they would always ask me, ‘Do you speak Korean?’ I was like, ‘Are they trying to make me go into that stereotypical role?’ Because that’s not me. I was born and raised in Canada.”
On racism and stereotypes in the WWE product: “I do think there’s a lot of racism and stereotyping. This is not an excuse for Vince, but I think it’s just ignorance. I think people with that kind of beliefs are raised that way, but it’s a different world now. So I hope that he’s listening and then he changes stuff. I think in his mind he thinks that if he hires people of ethnicities, then he’s not racist. But it’s not. It’s more than that. I truly believe that in his mind, he doesn’t think someone of color could be his face of the company which I disagree with. If you connected the audience in some way, you can be at the top.”
On finding success outside of WWE: “I always just kind of let my heart lead me. I know you can’t always do that because it’s business. But I always knew what I wanted to do, and I felt like my clock was ticking. So I got out of [WWE] to do what I wanted to do and that’s how I found success.”
On the origin of her Matrix character during her initial run with WWE: “They said, ‘We’re gonna go film some vignettes for your debut.’ They showed it to me and dress me for it, but never explained it to me. About a year and a half in [my career in WWE,] I remember one of the writers coming to me and saying, ‘We never really talked to you about your character, did we?’ I never really understood it. But I was so green that I was just trying to do what the company told me to do. It’s funny that this whole look is where I ended up at the end of my career. That’s very similar. I think that they got who I was supposed to be. But I wasn’t ready for it, and they never really explained it to me. And I never got to really let it develop naturally.”
Check out the complete Gail Kim interview below, or at YouTube.com.