It was reported last week that WWE were going to be moving away from the Performance Centre and will be showing all live shows from the Amway Centre in Orlando, this is a positive move for WWE and is the first step in allowing fans back into the audience.
The new change in venue allows WWE to unveil the new ThunderDome which is the new set being constructed within the Amway centre.
Photos have started circulating showing the production which is causing a ton of interest and speculation amongst fans.
A photo was posted on Twitter today by Jessi Davin which shows part of the set and it looks impressive so far, it seems WWE are going all out to ensure this works. Check out the Social media post below:
roadie4life on Instagram posted pictures of the WWE THUNDERDOME getting set up!
Holy sensory overload, Batman! This is gonna be WILD! 🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/sB8mUJVZs4
— Jessi Davin (@jessithebuckeye) August 17, 2020
Kevin Dunn, the Executive Vice President of Television Production spoke with Sports Illustrated about the future of WWE’s production. He said that the Thunderdome and what WWE have planned for it could allow them to produce entrances even better than Wrestlemania.
Here is what he said during the interview:
“We can now do things production-wise that we could never otherwise do. We’re flying drones in the arena, we are putting a roof inside the Amway Center, and we’ll be able to project content onto the roof. So when a big star like Drew McIntyre comes down to the ring, the whole arena will turn into his content with lasers, pyro, smoke, projections on the top of the building and on the floor. It will be a big, beautiful entrance, better than WrestleMania.”
The new concept will debut on this Friday’s episode of SmackDown. And it could be a vital key in helping Vince McMahon boost those declining ratings.
WWE have now confirmed that the Thunderdome plan is to continue from this Friday’s episode and not return to the Performance Centre for a While. Here is the full statement from WWE which was sent to Pro Wrestling Sheet:
WWE® BRINGS THE THUNDER
STAMFORD, Conn., – August 17, 2020 – WWE ThunderDome™, featuring a state-of-the-art set, video boards, pyrotechnics, lasers, cutting-edge graphics and drone cameras, will take WWE fans’ viewing experience to an unprecedented level starting this Friday, August 21 on FOX, kicking off SummerSlam® Weekend.
“WWE has a long history of producing the greatest live spectacles in sports and entertainment, yet nothing compares to what we are creating with WWE ThunderDome,” said Kevin Dunn, WWE Executive Vice President, Television Production. “This structure will enable us to deliver an immersive atmosphere and generate more excitement amongst the millions of fans watching our programming around the world.”
With the debut of WWE ThunderDome, WWE will take residency at Amway Center in Orlando and virtually bring fans into the arena via live video on massive LED boards, in conjunction with The Famous Group and its proprietary technology, for every Monday Night Raw®, Friday Night SmackDown® and WWE pay-per-view event. Starting tonight, fans can register Afor their virtual seat to be part of upcoming shows via www.WWEThunderDome.com or at WWE’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter pages.
“As WWE takes residency at the world-class Amway Center, we have reimagined our live event experience for today’s environment,” said Brian Flinn, WWE Chief Marketing & Communications Officer. “In partnership with The Famous Group, we will virtually bring our fans back into the show and recreate the interactive in-arena atmosphere that has been a staple of WWE events for decades.”
WWE Event Schedule for August:
• Friday, August 21 – Friday Night SmackDown®, Amway Center, 8 pm ET on FOX
• Saturday, August 22 – NXT TakeOver® XXX, Full Sail Live, 7 pm ET on WWE Network
• Sunday, August 23 – SummerSlam, Amway Center, 7 pm ET on WWE Network
• Monday, August 24 – Monday Night Raw®, Amway Center, 8 pm ET on USA Network
• Wednesday, August 26 – NXT®, Full Sail Live, 8 pm ET on USA Network
• Friday, August 28 – Friday Night SmackDown, Amway Center, 8 pm ET on FOX
• Sunday, August 30 – Payback®, Amway Center, 7 pm ET on WWE Network
• Monday, August 31 – Monday Night Raw, Amway Center, 8 pm ET on USA Network
WWE’s Amway Center residency will continue for the foreseeable future and Raw, SmackDown and pay-per-view programming will be produced on closed sets with only essential personnel in attendance. WWE will continue to administer its health and safety protocols for talent, crew and employees in conjunction with each production, including PCR testing for COVID-19, social distancing and wearing masks.