Former wrestling champ seals deal

LONDON — Blighty’s biggest newspaper News Corp.-owned the Sun and its Internet sibling the Sun Online are to grapple with former pro-wrestling champ Paul Heyman.

From Feb. 18, the tag team will begin airing “The Heyman Hustle,” a digital skein made for wireless, broadband Internet and mobile distribution. Show features Heyman as a motor-mouthed video-blogger with a range of subject matter far wider than the fight game. Heyman will also pen a weekly column for the Sun.

“Hustle” is produced by Heyman and Mitchell Stuart through Stuart’s Gotham-based shingle HQ Productions. It is executive produced by Enid Nagler Stuart and Peter E. Poon.

Skein is Poon’s first entertainment venture since quitting as GM of News Corp.’s Hong Kong-based Fortune Star offshoot at the beginning of the month. The show was first mooted by Fortune Star at the October 2006 Mipcom TV market.

“Paul’s Q-rating from his time as owner of the ECW Wrestling brand, and as writer and performer for World Wrestling Entertainment have afforded him worldwide recognition not only as an on-air personality, but as a creative pied piper whose audience will follow him because of his track record of innovation,” the Sun Online’s showbiz editor Simon Rothstein said.

“We wanted to find the right strategic partner for ‘Heyman Hustle,’ and the Sun has a massive network that is viewed not only by the largest audience in the U.K. but is respected on a worldwide basis,” Poon said.

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