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Shoot Interview w/"Marquee" Bruce Santee & "Supermodel" Amy Love
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It’s been more then two years since I last interviewed the man now called “The Marquee” Bruce Santee. In early 2004 he was in the middle of a bitter divorce and working for the now defunct NWA Florida. These days he is working for several promotions throughout the Tampa Bay area. Usually along side his manager and wife “Supermodel” Amy Love who began training for wrestling in the summer of 2003. One of the IPW WrestlePlex trainers was Bruce, along with Navy Seal and others. Unlike other interviews you might have read on my site, this one is 100% shoot style and may offend some people mentioned with the topics and language used. The comments are the views of Mr. and Mrs. Santee so don’t shoot the messenger.

Alan J. Wojcik: Let’s begin with some background on Amy. What led you from
Texas to Florida
and how did you come to train at the IPW WrestlePlex under the teachings of Navy Seal and the then named Bruce Steele?

Amy Love: I left
Texas in search of a new place and a new beginning. I was originally going to move to LA, but I wanted to start somewhere with a slower pace. I fell in love with Florida and decided against moving to LA in a couple years. I did some internet searching and the WrestlePlex was the closest to Orlando
and I figured I could make the commute. I spoke with Naphtali and he invited me to come see a show to see if I wanted to train and there was just something about the place. I came down a couple weeks later and I was hooked. I actually started training under Naphtali and Bruce and various people would step in and help out, then Seal took over.

Alan J. Wojcik: You were part of the final night of IPW Hardcore’s existence in September 2003. Bruce was in a storyline where he (and real life wife soon to be ex) Sexretary Tiffany had split over Bruce being part of the AOD (Alliance of Defiance founded by Scoot Andrews.) That night you were part of the storyline attacking Tiffany. Was it weird for you to be new to the business and be part of this real life situation and what was your status with Bruce? Was it just trainer/trainee or were there romantic feelings already in the room.

Amy Love: Yes we were together at that point. I was a little weirded (sic) out at the whole situation. I couldn’t wait to hit that fat bitch in her big nose. Later she complained that I hurt her, I say you’re in wrestling things get rough.

Alan J. Wojcik: Who came up with the name “Hot Ass” Amy Love and what was it like competing in mostly missed tag matches since there wasn’t an abundance of female workers in
Florida
?

Amy Love: If I remember, it was Steve Madison who called me “Hot Ass” behind the concession stand where I worked during the WrestlePlex shows. I was working with James Morrison (the former Job Zout) and he was sort of the rock star so Courtney Love’s last name became mine. I wasn’t opposed to working with guys because the more training I did with men it would be easier with women. Lots of women don’t hit hard so I learned to bump from working guys.

Bruce Santee: I think it taught her how to take a beating. I trained and we were stiff with her. Navy Seal accidentally broke her nose twice in one week. She snapped it back in her place and got back in. She is tougher then 98% of the guys, I know she is tougher then me.

Alan J. Wojcik: We haven’t talked on tape in over two years so we have lots to cover but we’ll sift through the monotonous stuff. You were part of NWA Florida in 2004 and done some dark stuff for TNA Wrestling when the weekly PPV’s were going on in
Nashville. They moved some of the filming to Orlando
for what now is TNA Impact. In the early tapings of the summer/fall 2004 you were part of the enhancement talent on the shows. What led you to stop working for them and were you ever offered a deal since besides Hotstuff Hernandez, Ryan Wilson, Abyss, Monty Brown and Lance Hoyt you were biggest guy over there.

Bruce Santee: TNA brought me, Rod Steel and Frankie Ciatso (formerly Capone) for a dark match with Team
Canada
(Bobby Roode, Eric Young and Johnny Devine). Tonight I watched Johnny and A1 work (for FPWA) and he is still good in the ring. TNA wanted a competitive match to see what we had. The next week we worked a dark with the Naturals (Chase Stevens and Andy Douglas) who are great. There was talk of us working for TNA so Rod and I got matching gear to look good. But before everything happened we got thrown into squash matches. I got beat by Monty Brown which is cool. Rod got squashed by Raven. That was followed by a few more matches and then we put over Russ Rollins (Orlando DJ) and Marc Mero which was cool, were company guys. After that we felt we didn’t know our place with TNA and I don’t think TNA knew what to do with us. I am more of a WWE looking guy and with the exception of the guys you mentioned I was a monster in TNA. I would have loved to work with TNA but I have no ill feelings with the whole experience.

Alan J. Wojcik: At one of the tapings TNA ring announcer Jeremy Borash called you and Rod “the Steel Brothers” despite the obvious spelling of the last names being different. Did that miscue lead to your working for Spinebuster in
Georgia
under that name and after beating each other for years in IPW and NWA Florida what is Rod like as a partner?

Bruce Santee: Rod is… (Amy laughs too loud for Bruce to continue)

Alan J. Wojcik: In ring partner you devious minded person.

Bruce Santee: Rod is the laziest MF’er ever, he’ll do anything to avoid taking a bump and
I love him to death. He has suffered 10 concussions in his career, suffers from two bad shoulders and a bad knee so I protect him out there from his mind wanting to do things he can’t do anymore. Rod is great at the talking and I do the walking. I am surprised that other promotions haven’t brought us in.

Alan J. Wojcik: Back in 2004’s interview you threw Full Impact Pro (FIP) under the bus. Yet in early 2005 you, Rod, Frankie and Marcus Dillon did some matches a couple of their shows. What led to a change in heart was it talking to Sal (Hamaoui) or was it Gabe Sapolsky of Ring of Honor (ROH) coming to be their booker?

Bruce Santee: Ron Niemi made a deal with Sal that finally came to be after fighting for months over territory and talent working for them. So the DVD deal happened and that allowed NWA Florida guys for FIP. We were going to work for Hardcore Hell 2005 with NWA Wildside the next night so Sal was nice enough to allow the four of us Capone, Dillon, Rod and I)to work out the match before we did it in
Georgia
. We opened up the Wildside event and got good notes with fans. I had my worst match ever in 2005 with Rainman (Kory Chavis) working for FIP and wasn’t either of us to be faulted. I just felt like I was drunk in the ring and couldn’t do anything right. I was trying to do a different style for FIP and it led to me losing that slot.

Alan J. Wojcik: While Bruce was working for FIP and NWA Florida which morphed into Pro Wrestling Warfare (PWW) you went to Pittsburgh to be part of Wrestle Reunion II where you in a match against former WWF Women’s champion Wendi Richter.

Amy Love: I was really excited since she was the biggest name I had worked with. She was in WrestleMania 1 for god sakes. It was awesome being in front of that sized crowd and learning so much from her. The best part was the crowd was hot for everything we did.

Alan J. Wojcik: Speaking of hot, around that time “Hot Ass” Amy Love disappeared and in her place was “Supermodel” Amy Love. Who came up with the change and were you surprised the response you got as a heel?

Amy Love: I came up with the character. I was thinking of a gimmick that didn’t involve me gaining weight. Everyone was on me to gain weight and one night in bed I was thinking it over and the waif super model look popped in my head. I am skinny, tall and wouldn’t have to lose weight.

Alan J. Wojcik: I think it worked since several fans mentioned to me that you look like (former OC star) Mischa Barton.

Amy Love: I have never gotten that but I get told I look like other people. I loved getting that level of heat and being able to talk shit I couldn’t do as a babyface.

Alan J. Wojcik: While other groups were having reunion shows up north, IPW Hardcore held one September 17, 2005. Were your initial thoughts “why are we doing this” or “great this will be so cool?”

Bruce Santee: (IPW/NWA FL/PWW’s) Aaron Royal was the one who told me about four months before it happened. I thought it was great since to be honest nostalgia sells, look at Rock N Roll Express, Bobby Eaton and Tully Blanchard who are still working and draw thousands of people. I was keen on the idea and the show was at our old stomping ground at the VWF Hall in St Pete. I was in a four way match with Buck Quartermaine, Mike Sullivan and Lex Lovett. All four of us held the IPW World title belt and worked in front of a SRO crowd that night.

Alan J. Wojcik: We’re going to do a cyclical thing so stay with me. Around or during this time we’re talking about, you went from Agent Steele to Bruce Steele to your real name Bruce Santee with the moniker “the Marquee” in front of it. Was this decision based on the amount of guys using Steel/Steele as a last name or something else?

Bruce Santee: I think it was a case of too many Steele’s out there on the independents; I was getting mistaken for them in bookings. I decided to become someone that is real and that is where “the Marquee” name came from. I think I am the best independent wrestler out there. I feel I have the charisma, the ability and the look to be under contract with WWE or TNA. Some people say that’s ego talking, no its confidence in oneself. On my worst day I can entertain people. I took that name because I am a focus in several promotions. The crowd is with me or against me and they want to watch me.

Alan J. Wojcik: Since our last interview we have seen Mike and Todd Shane become the Gymini and Antonio Banks become Montell Vontavious Porter in WWE. Both were signed or talked to WWE about working for them in January 2005 when you were part of the Kurt Angle challenge as a security officer when Roderick Strong worked Angle. Don’t take this the wrong way but its got to frustrate the living shit out of you that they are in WWE and you’re here talking to me after an FPWA show no offense to FPWA intended. I have said in numerous show notes I felt you belong in WWE or TNA.

Bruce Santee: To be honest I have no ill feelings about either of them signing. Mike and Todd busted their asses all over the world on the best and the crappiest of shows. Here are two 300 pound guys who bump like cruiserweights and that’s amazing. They should have been working p there seven years ago. Antonio got signed six months after that night and I saw him talk to (WWE Talent Relations manager) Johnny Ace (Laurinitis) and ask for two minutes of Johnny’s time. After pestering him Ace gave him some time and Antonio asked what he needed to do to get a job. Johnny told him come up with a persona and send me a tape. Antonio came up with the MVP persona which is going to make him a headliner. All three of them busted their asses to get there. The Shane’s are 37-38 years old when they signed and Banks is around 32. I am 27 and I feel I am ready to get with them.

Amy Love: I think the three of them makes
Florida look that much better. Florida
has such a deep tradition in wrestling and the three of them makes a road out to WWE. I would love to see Bruce and I work there soon.

Bruce Santee: I want to add Ryan O’Reilly to that mix too Alan. Man has he gotten good since he signed and worked in
Deep South (Deep South Wrestling is a WWE developmental territory in Georgia
.) I think he has done some work with ECW. He and Banks have formed into the WWE ring style and I am not far behind.

Alan J. Wojcik: Speaking of marquee names, in 2005-06 you worked three current/former WWE workers. In spring 2005 before 3,000 people after a Tampa Bay Storm arena football game you worked Memphis legend Jerry “the King” Lawler, then working for EWE (Elite Wrestling Entertainment) you worked Chris Kanyon and Kip James (formerly Billy Gunn.)

Bruce Santee: Jerry Lawler surprised me because I thought he was going to come in and just collect a check. Man was I in for a shock since he came with his working boots. The dude threw a dropkick at my 6 foot 4 frame for fucks sake. Seriously though I like to work old school and can walk/talk. The King liked me and put me over to the promoter. The first time I worked Kanyon was right around when he came out of the closet. I was told him I was fine as long as he didn’t get a stuffy in the ring (laughs.) Kanyon will give 150% no matter if there are 10 or 10,000 people in the crowd. I think everyone on the indies should have that attitude. He goes out there to entertain and it’s great to have worked with him in some of my best matches. Kip James wow I admit I was an Ass Man/New Age Outlaws mark in the day. He is so freakin’ big in person. He was like Lawler I thought he was going to mail it in but he came to work. Those three guys helped me realize that I belong in the WWE.

Alan J. Wojcik: At one point you were working for two rival promotions in New Port Richey,
Florida
, ACW (American Combat Wrestling run by David Kocotos) and AWF (Alliance Wrestling Force run by Richard Merritt). In fact you were the heavyweight champion of both groups. Was there ever a point when one asked to you kidnap the title belt or shitcan one in front of the other’s crowd. Any of that underhanded stuff going on?

Bruce Santee: I started with AWF first when ACW asked me to work for them. There was some conflict over who built up NPR and to be honest it was ACW who draws 2-300 people to a bar each Tuesday night. AWF is family oriented and runs on weekends. I ran into some problems with each but both promoters are cool.

Alan J. Wojcik: We got into a disagreement at Richie Rich’s WrestleMania 22 party over me liking (Go Daddy dot com spokes model) Candace Michelle and you saying she was ugly and had cottage cheese thighs. This leads me to this question for both of you. What are your feelings about the overall way women are treated in wrestling? Amy do you want to be like Candace or Tori Wilson and pose in Playboy or do you want to be like Victoria and Trish Stratus who tried to kill each other at Survivor Series 2001 in a hardcore match.

Amy Love: I think women are portrayed as rats no matter who they are. Automatically in a locker room people think I am a rat or groupie when I come to work with Bruce. I have to prove I am worker and here to compete. I get the bad rap for the girls that are rats. I wouldn’t have a problem posing in Playboy but I wouldn’t do it to get myself over with the fans. I don’t think my mom would care for it but I think the magazine is tasteful. I am comfortable being naked so it would be fine.

Alan J. Wojcik: We mentioned you working in Georgia and all around
Florida
. Do you ever see yourself working for IWA-Mid South, CZW (Combat Zone Wrestling), ROH or Pro Wrestling Guerilla (home to Joey Ryan who worked on the same show this interview took place after.)

Bruce Santee: With indy wrestling you have to lose money to make money and I am into making money right now. I am not an ROH worker I am more into using my character and not doing a spot fest. I have seen IWA MS and they are one of my favorites to watch from hardcore to the technical stuff. If someone wants to book me out of
Florida
get in touch and let’s talk.

Alan J. Wojcik: You are the only interview subject in the five years of my career who has more fun with word association then the actual interview. So once again I am going to do this just for you and your lovely wife. Let’s begin with former NWA Florida owner Joe Price.
Bruce Santee: (laughs) I hear he makes championship belts but when you order them they don’t show up.

Amy Love: No comment about him or his companion.

Alan J. Wojcik: “the Hardcore Giant” Ron Niemi.

Bruce Santee: He made
Florida
great.

Amy Love: Crazy but fun to be around.

Alan J. Wojcik: Frankie Capone now known as Francisco Ciatso.

Bruce Santee: You mean inmate Ciatso. I fucking love the guy. Great entertainer.

Amy Love: I was thinking jailbird as his mugshot popped in my head. Awesome guy.

Alan J. Wojcik: The trainer of both of you the Navy Seal.

Bruce Santee: He is the man he taught me so much about wrestling.

Amy Love:
Great trainer, I learned so much in a little amount of time, plus Jamaican Jam.

Alan J. Wojcik: FIP’s Sal Hamaoui and Gabe Sapolsky.

Bruce Santee: Differences aside Sal and Gabe makes their livings in wrestling, I don’t.

Alan J. Wojcik: ACW’s Dave Kocotos.

Bruce Santee: Good guy who is building a company from the ground up. He isn’t losing money so he is doing something right.

Amy Love: Good promoter. Sorry is this one or two or can I talk about the topic?

Alan J. Wojcik: You think I am going to tell him to shut up. I want to see my 32nd birthday (room erupts into laughter.) Let’s talk about Richard Merritt his AWF rival.

Bruce Santee: Another good promoter who is following his business plan to fruition.

Alan J. Wojcik: The master of the DVD on the DVD and promoter of PWW, Naphtali.

Bruce Santee: I love that guy. He should have a job with WWE as a road agent he puts great matches together.

Amy Love. He such a creative genius.

Alan J. Wojcik: I hate this one, the recently departed Jennifer Bednar, Miss XTC Jenni Lee.

Bruce Santee: We had some differences but she was good hearted.

Amy Love: We weren’t friends but its sad she went the way she did.

Alan J. Wojcik: I am going to regret this since they will surely come after me. David Babylon.

Bruce Santee: Vagina..

Amy Love: What an asshole he turned out to be. I was cool with him when I began in wrestling. He is such an ass.

Alan J. Wojcik: Do I need more tapes to talk about Sexretary Tiffany or can you keep this under two hours.

Bruce Santee: Tiffany helped me grow up but at the same time she is trash. I really am at a loss for words.

Amy Love: All I have to say is thank you for putting Bruce in my life. You gave up such a wonderful man.

Bruce Santee: To be mature about this I wish them the best because Tiffany and I were two different people. She wanted kids and I don’t. I wish them the best. David gave me a blessing because I would have gotten her pregnant and ended up punting the kid into the
Gulf of Mexico
.

Alan J. Wojcik: Let’s wrap up on a good note. Bruce tell me what makes Amy Love great.

Bruce Santee: The absolute best woman you can find. She works a 40 hour work week all while hitting the gym 2 hour a say and carrying nine credits at college all while managing our house. She has so much charisma with the “supermodel” gimmick she makes Janice Dickenson look bad. I couldn’t ask for anyone better in my life.

Alan J. Wojcik: Now that there isn’t a dry eye in the house, Amy talk to me about this guy.

Amy Love: I am so happy that I met him. It’s crazy because when I was training we weren’t doing anything at all.

Bruce Santee: Kick on that porno music.

Alan J. Wojcik: Hey she kept quiet when you got all philosophical.

Amy Love: As far as Bruce being my husband, he is such a great man we have so much fun in life. He lives in the gym trying to make his dream possible while working full time. His life is wrestling, the gym, work and our dog Bella. As far as Bruce the wrestler he is tremendous. He has the IT factor you hear about. People remember him when we are out at dinner. His ring work has improved since we met. I know he will be in the fed one day.

For more on each person check out
www.myspace.com/amylove27 and www.myspace.com/brucesteele

AWF can be found at
www.awfpro.com ACW is located at www.acw-wrestling.com , FIP is www.fullimpactpro.com while Pro Wrestling Warfare is located at www.pwwf.com and www.EWEFLorida.com is home of EWE and the Wrestle Revolution.