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Scope and influence::Professional wrestling

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Scope and influence

A wrestler (Christopher Daniels) leaps off the top rope

Unlike in Europe, show wrestling has become especially prominent in Japan and in Central and North America.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> In Brazil, there was a very popular wrestling television program from the 1960s to the early 1980s called Telecatch. High-profile figures in the sport have become celebrities or cultural icons in their native or adopted home countries.

Although professional wrestling started out as petty acts in sideshows, traveling circuses and carnivals, today it is a billion-dollar industry. Revenue is drawn from ticket sales, network television broadcasts, pay-per-view broadcasts, branded merchandise and home video. Pro wrestling was instrumental in making pay-per-view a viable method of content delivery. Annual shows such as WrestleMania, SummerSlam, Royal Rumble, and formerly Bash at the Beach, Halloween Havoc & Starrcade are among the highest-selling pay-per-view programming each year. In modern day, internet programming has been utilized by a number of companies to air web shows, internet pay per views (IPPVs) or on-demand content, helping to generate internet-related revenue earnings from the evolving World Wide Web.

Home video sales dominate the Billboard charts Recreational Sports DVD sales, with wrestling holding anywhere from 3 to 9 of the top 10 spots every week.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>

Due to its persistent cultural presence and to its novelty within the performing arts, wrestling constitutes a recurring topic in both academia and the media. Several documentaries have been produced looking at professional wrestling, most notably, Beyond the Mat directed by Barry W. Blaustein, and Wrestling with Shadows featuring wrestler Bret Hart and directed by Paul Jay. There have also been many fictional depictions of wrestling; the 2008 film The Wrestler received several Oscar nominations and began a career revival for star Mickey Rourke.

Currently, the largest professional wrestling company worldwide is the United States-based WWE, which bought out many smaller regional companies in the late 20th century, as well as its primary US competitors World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) in early 2001. Other prominent professional wrestling companies worldwide include the US-based Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) and Ring of Honor (ROH), Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre and Asistencia Asesoría y Administración in Mexico, and the Japanese New Japan Pro Wrestling, All Japan Pro Wrestling, and Pro Wrestling Noah leagues.


Professional wrestling sections
Intro  History  Scope and influence  Genre conventions  Rules  Dramatic elements  Wrestlers  Styles and characteristics in different countries  Culture  See also  Footnotes  References  External links  

Scope and influence
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