WWE Diva Search

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WWE Diva Search
Diva Search.jpg
Format Sports entertainment
Professional wrestling
Reality television
Created by Vince McMahon
Starring Diva Search roster
Opening theme "Let It Roll" by Velvet Revolver
Country of origin United States
No. of seasons 5
No. of episodes 39
Production
Camera setup Multicamera setup
Broadcast
Original channel Spike TV (2004 – 2005)
USA Network (2006)
UPN (2006)
WWE.com (2007)
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
Original run July 1, 2003 (2003-07-01) – October 29, 2007 (2007-10-29)
Chronology
Related shows WWE Raw
WWE SmackDown
WWE Tough Enough
External links
Website

WWE Diva Search is a talent competition held by WWE. The first winner was Jaime Koeppe, but she did not receive a contract like subsequent winners of the contest. Other winners included Christy Hemme, Ashley Massaro, Layla El, and Eve Torres. In addition to the winners of the yearly contest, WWE has hired several contestants as Divas. In 2011 WWE announced plans to bring back the Diva Search.[1] As of 2014, Layla, Rosa Mendes and the Bella Twins, from the 2006 Diva Search, are the last remaining Divas to come from the Diva Search.

2003[edit]

WWE Diva Search
2003
Winner
Name Jaime Koeppe
Hometown Langley, British Columbia, Canada

The first WWE Diva Search took place in between July 1 and August 24, 2003. However, unlike the later Diva Searches, the first Diva Search winner did not receive a contract. She received a photoshoot for an issue of WWE Magazine. Jaime Koeppe was named the first WWE Diva Search winner.

2004[edit]

WWE Diva Search
2004
Broadcast from July 15, 2004 – September 20, 2004
Broadcaster Spike TV
Winner
Christy Hemme, the 2004 Diva Search winner
Christy Hemme, the 2004 Diva Search winner
Name Christy Hemme
Hometown Poway, California
Runner-up
Carmella DeCesare

Official themes[edit]

The 2004 WWE Raw $250,000 Diva Search featured four official theme songs.

^[1] "Real Good Girl" by Jim Johnston was wrote exclusively for the 2004 WWE Raw $250,000 Diva Search competition. The song was later featured in WWE ThemeAddict: The Music, Vol. 6.
^[2] "Walk Idiot Walk" by The Hives was also used as the official entrance theme of the 2004 WWE Raw $250,000 Diva Search winner, Christy Hemme, after winning competition.

Top 28[edit]

Open casting calls were held in Los Angeles, NYC, and Chicago in June and July to narrow the field down from thousands to 28 women. The following the 28 finalists where chosen from each of the locations:

Finalists[edit]

Name Age[3] Hometown Eliminated
Christy Hemme 23 United States Poway, California Winner[2][3][4][5]
Carmella DeCesare 26 United States Avon Lake, Ohio Runner-Up[4][6]
Joy Giovanni 26 United States Boston, Massachusetts 3rd Place[6]
Amy Weber 27 United States Mapleton, Illinois 4th Place[6]
Maria Kanellis 22 United States Ottawa, Illinois 5th Place[7]
Tracie Wright 24 United States Atlanta, Georgia 6th Place
Michelle McCool 24 United States Palatka, Florida 7th Place[7]
Chandra Costello 28 United States Liberty, Kentucky 8th Place
Camille Anderson 26 United States Dallas, Texas 9th Place
Julia Costello 28 United States Liberty, Kentucky 10th Place
^[3] Ages were at time of filming.

Notes[edit]

Former Diva Search contestant Candice Michelle as the Women's Champion

In 2004, WWE decided to make an extension of the Diva Search, which included a one-year contract worth $250,000 and was held on Raw.[5][8] Over 7,000 females applied to be a part of the contest.[2] The final ten contestants were chosen on a casting special aired on Spike TV on July 15, with guest judges Triple H, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho and Edge.[8]

They began airing the weekly Diva Search segments on July 19.[5][8] Despite reported claims by the company that the contest would be handled in a classy manner, the contest involved prospective divas performing suggestive acts on live television, such as "seducing" a male wrestler. Fans were allowed to vote for the winners,[5] but the outcome of the voting process was questioned by media outlets. The eventual winner of the competition was Christy Hemme, who went on to pose in Playboy and competed at WrestleMania 21 for the WWE Women's Championship where she was accompanied to the ring by Lita, but ended up with Trish Stratus retaining the title.[3]

Finalists (winner Hemme, runner-up Carmella DeCesare, Amy Weber, and Joy Giovanni)[6] took part in a segment titled "Diss the Diva" on August 30, 2004,[9] which was censored at several points due to foul language and obscenities from the contestants when they were asked to taunt one another verbally. Backstage, the four contestants bickered with and disliked each other, as well.[6] Also, during an earlier segment in the competition, Maria Kanellis gave DeCesare the middle finger.[7]

Despite only one winner being crowned in the competition each year, WWE hired a large number of the contestants from past contests and immediately placed them in on-camera in non-wrestling roles. From the 2004 Diva Search, Michelle McCool, Amy Weber,[6] Candice Michelle,[8] Maria Kanellis,[7] and Joy Giovanni all received contracts after losing the contest. Several of the girls were sent to Ohio Valley Wrestling to train.[6] Weber eventually quit the company, alleging that Randy Orton had played cruel pranks on her. In December 2005, Christy Hemme was released by WWE due to budget cuts.[6] Hemme posed for the cover of Playboy in 2005, Candice Michelle appeared on the cover for the 2006 issue, and Kanellis appeared on the cover in 2008. Candice Michelle went on to be the first Diva Search contestant to win the WWE Women's Championship in June 2007 and Michelle McCool became the first holder of the WWE Divas Championship in July 2008. Despite being released back in 2005, Joy Giovanni participated in the 25-Divas Battle Royal at Wrestlemania XXV. On June 19, 2009, Candice Michelle was released by WWE. That year, McCool became the first contestant to hold the Women's Championship and Divas Championship along with winning the Unified Divas Championship in 2010 and would go on to form Lay-Cool with 2006 winner Layla El. Kanellis became the first Diva Search contestant to win a Slammy at the 2009 WWE Slammy Awards for Diva of the Year as voted by the fans at WWE.com followed by McCool in 2010 after winning the Battle Royal at 2010 WWE Slammy Awards in addition to her sharing Knucklehead of the Year with El. Maria Kanellis took part of The Celebrity Apperentice 3 prior to her release from the company before the show aired in March. Michelle McCool became the last contestant until her departure on May 1, 2011 at Extreme Rules as she was defeated by Layla El in a no count-out, no DQ, loser leaves WWE match. As of 2011, contestants from the 2004 contest are no longer active with the WWE.

2005[edit]

WWE Diva Search
2005
Broadcast from June 27, 2005 – August 15, 2005
Broadcaster Spike TV
Winner
Ashley Massaro, the 2005 Diva Search winner
Ashley Massaro, the 2005 Diva Search winner
Name Ashley Massaro
Hometown Babylon, New York
Runner-up
Leyla Milani

Official theme[edit]

The 2005 WWE Diva Search featured one official theme song.

^[1] "Be Yourself" by Audioslave was also used as the official entrance theme of the 2005 WWE Diva Search winner, Ashley Massaro, after winning competition.

Contestants[edit]

Name Age[5] Hometown Eliminated
Ashley Massaro 26 United States Babylon, New York Winner[6][10]
Leyla Milani 23 Canada Toronto, Ontario Runner-Up
Elisabeth Rouffaer 22 United States Santa Cruz, California 3rd Place
Kristal Marshall 21 United States Los Angeles, California 4th Place
Summer DeLin 24 United States Shreveport, Louisiana 5th Place
Cameron Haven 24 United States Lake Worth, Florida 6th Place
Simona Fusco 25 Italy Milano, Italy 7th Place
Leilene "Alexis" Ondrade 23 United States Costa Mesa, California 8th Place
^[5] Ages were at time of filming.

Notes[edit]

For the 2005 Diva Search, the eight finalists began appearing on Raw on June 27. One contestant was eliminated each week until there was a final three.[10] Contestant Leyla Milani accidentally exposed herself by falling out of her top while attempting to navigate an obstacle course on the July 4 edition of Raw, leading to a "disqualification" in the contest.[11]

Ashley Massaro was declared the winner on August 15 and received $250,000.[10] Massaro wanted to train to wrestle, however, due to her family's involvement in amateur wrestling. As in 2004, not only the winner of the contest was hired by WWE. Massaro appeared on the cover of the 2007 issue of Playboy and also took part of Survivor: China. Other contestants hired include Kristal Marshall, Trenesha Biggers (eliminated in the Top 25) and Elisabeth Rouffaer. Leyla Milani, the runner up and a model for the NBC television show Deal or No Deal appeared in a commercial for USA Network called "Raw Fan Nation". Leilene "Alexis" Ondrade appeared as Smiley on the VH1 reality show Flavor of Love, Flavor of Love Girls: Charm School and I Love Money 2. On July 9, 2008, Massaro requested and was granted her release from her WWE contract. As of 2008, contestants from the 2005 Diva Search are no longer active with the WWE.

2006[edit]

WWE Diva Search
2006
Broadcast from July 10, 2006 – August 16, 2006
Broadcaster USA Network
UPN
Winner
A dark-haired, tanned Caucasian female straddles the top rope of a wrestling ring with blue ropes. She is wearing a red patterned crop top, and matching shorts and kneepads. She is holding a wrestling championship above her head with both hands.
Layla El, the 2006 Diva Search winner
Name Layla El
Hometown Miami, Florida
Runner-up
Jen England

Official themes[edit]

The 2006 WWE Diva Search featured three official theme songs.

^[1] "Move Along" by The All-American Rejects was also used as the official entrance theme of the 2006 WWE Diva Search winner, Layla El, after winning competition.

Contestants[edit]

Name Age[7] Hometown Eliminated
Layla El 29 England London, England Winner[12]
Jen England 27 United States Lansing, Michigan Runner-Up[12]
J.T. Tinney 25 United States Phoenix, Arizona 3rd Place[12]
Milena Roucka 26 Canada Vancouver, British Columbia 4th Place[12]
Erica Chevillar 23 United States Boca Raton, Florida 5th Place[12]
Rebecca DiPietro 26 United States Rehoboth, Massachusetts 6th Place[12]
Maryse Ouellet 23 Canada Montreal, Quebec 7th Place[12]
Amy Zidian 23 United States Orlando, Florida 8th Place[12]
^[6] Ages were at time of filming.

Notes[edit]

The eight finalists made their first appearance on WWE programming on Raw on July 10.[13] The Diva Search had an awkward beginning on July 10 with an introductory segment on Raw featuring new host Mike Mizanin. During the segment, Mizanin appeared to have forgotten his lines and stammered on for several minutes when trying to explain the voting procedures for the contest.[14] When introducing the contestants, Mizanin mispronounced names and looked uncomfortable in his new role as Diva Search emcee.[14] Each week, the contestants appeared on both Raw and SmackDown!.[13] The final three appeared on a special that aired on August 16, 2006 on the USA Network, where the winner was announced.

Layla El won the 3rd annual Diva Search[12] and was placed on SmackDown! in late 2006 before she was moved to ECW as part of the short lived dance trio Extreme Expose throughout 2007. WWE also hired several of the eliminated Diva contestants including: Maryse Ouellet, The Garcia Twins, Rebecca DiPietro, Brooke Adams, Amy Zidian, and Milena Roucka. DiPietro had a short stint with the company when she became a backstage interviewer on the ECW brand. Amy Zidian also had a short stint with the business when she debuted on Smackdown as the valet for Jimmy Wang Yang before she was released due to her poor backstage behavior. Adams was first sent to Deep South Wrestling before debuting on the ECW brand as a member of Extreme Expose with El but was released in 2007 and later went to work for Impact Wrestling in 2010. The Garcia Twins debuted on the SmackDown brand as The Bella Twins in August 2008. In December 2008, Ouellet won the Divas Championship after defeating 2004 finalist Michelle McCool and became the second contestant to win that title. Ouellet would then go on to win her second and last Divas title after defeating Gail Kim in the Tournament Finals in 2010 when the title was vacated. Milena went on to become Rosa Mendes, a fan of the Glamazon Beth Phoenix who debuted in 2008 and has since then managed Carlito, Zack Ryder, and the team of Primo and Epico. In May 2010, Layla became the only Diva Search winner to become the WWE Women's Champion after teaming up with Michelle McCool to defeat Beth Phoenix in a 2 on 1 Handicap Match. Due to the fact that Layla got the pinfall, she became the Women's Champion. Layla also became the second winner to win a title and the last person to hold the Women's Championship before it was retired. That year, she and McCool won Knucklehead of the Year at the 2010 Slammy Awards making Layla the first Diva Search winner to win a Slammy. Brie Bella would go on to win the Divas title in April 2011 after defeating 2007 winner Eve Torres and her twin sister Nikki won the title in 2012. Also in 2012, Layla became the second winner to hold the Divas Championship after beating Nikki at WWE Extreme Rules when she was revealed as the mystery opponent to replace Beth Phoenix and the only winner that has held both the Women's and Divas Championship. On October 28, 2011, Maryse Ouellet was released by WWE. The Garcia Twins originally departed in April 2012 when they were kayfabe fired by Eve but later returned to the company in March 2013. The twins also "Total Diva of the Year" in addition to Brie winning "Couple of the Year" with real-life husband Daniel Bryan at the 2013 Slammy Awards. Both categories were voted by the fans on the WWE App. As of April 2013, Layla, Rosa Mendes and the Bella Twins are the only contestants from the 2006 Diva Search still active, as well as the last remaining divas to come from the Diva Search. Nearly 8 years later, their career longevity has outlasted every other WWE diva in history, only to be surpassed by Victoria (2000–2009, 9 years), Marlena (1996–2004, 8 years), Melina Perez (2003–2011, 8 years), Beth Phoenix (2004–2012, 8 years), Miss Elizabeth (1985–1992, 7 years), Torrie Wilson (2001–2008, 7 years) Jillian Hall (2003–2010, 7 years), Mickie James (2003–2010, 7 years). Another diva who has been with the company the longest is Alicia Fox (2006-) making her the longest tenured diva currently signed. The Bella Twins appeared as cast members of the reality show Total Divas while Rosa Mendes is set to appear in the shows upcoming third season.

2007[edit]

WWE Diva Search
2007
Broadcast from September 10, 2007 – October 29, 2007
Broadcaster WWE.com
Winner
Eve Torres, the 2007 Diva Search winner
Eve Torres, the 2007 Diva Search winner
Name Eve Torres
Hometown Denver, Colorado
Runner-up
Brooke Gilbertsen

Official theme[edit]

The 2007 WWE Diva Search featured one official theme song.

Contestants[edit]

Name Age[8] Hometown Eliminated
Eve Torres 22 United States Denver, Colorado Winner[16]
Brooke Gilbertsen 22 United States Chicago, Illinois Runner-Up
Lena Yada 27 United States Los Angeles, California 3rd Place
Taryn Terrell 21 United States New Orleans, Louisiana 4th Place[17]
Jessica Hatch 26 Canada Montreal, Quebec 5th Place[18]
J. Kim 24 United States Catawba, North Carolina 6th Place[19]
Lyndy Frieson 22 Canada Vancouver, British Columbia 7th Place[20]
Naomi Kirk 24 England West Yorkshire, England 8th Place[21]
^[7] Ages were at time of filming.

Notes[edit]

Former 2007 Diva Search Contestant, Taryn Terrell portraying the character of Tiffany on Raw.

The first competition was on WWE.com on September 10, which was also when the voting started. The winner was announced on the October 29 edition of Raw. Unlike past Diva Searches, this Search was the first to take place exclusively on WWE.com. Tarryn Terrell, Angela Fong and Lena Yada were called up to the roster despite being eliminated. Torres debuted on the Smackdown brand as a backstage interviewer before her in-ring debut in early 2009. Yada served as a backstage interviewer on ECW while Fong who was signed to a developmental contract and did ring announcing for the first season of WWE NXT as Savannah. Terrell became the Assistant to ECW General Manager Theodore Long and later became the General Manager while going under the name of Tiffany, but started competing in matches on Smackdown after ECW went off the air. After winning the competition, Eve Torres along with 2006 winner Layla El became the only two Diva Search winners to win a title. Torres also became the first winner to hold the Divas Championship and later became a three-time champion after winning the title again at the 2011 Royal Rumble and at 2012 Night of Champions. In addition, she won the 2012 reality show Stars Earn Stripes and served as the Executive Administrator for then-General Manager of Raw and Smackdown John Laurinaitis as well as the Assistant to Smackdown General Manager Booker T. Eve Torres remained as the only Diva Search contestant following the releases of Lena Yada in 2008 and Angela Fong and Taryn Terrell in 2010, until her departure in early 2013 but made a one-time appearance at the 2013 Slammys to present "Total Diva of the Year". As of 2013, contestants from the final Diva Search are no longer active with the company.

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Cabledude (January 26, 2011). "WWE News: Items from WWE corporate presentation Wed. - new standard PPV schedule, return of Diva Search, Summerslam's annual location, more". PWTorch. Retrieved 2011-01-26. 
  2. ^ a b "Christy Hemme". PurrfectAngelz.com. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  3. ^ a b Tim Baines (March 9, 2005). "Christy Hemme: A naked conversation". The Ottawa Sun. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  4. ^ a b "Christy Hemme". Bullz-eye.com. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Hemme Wins $250,000 One-Year Contract with WWE". Business Wire. September 21, 2004. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i Simon 'LILSBOY' Rothstein (August 2005). "Hemme is Christy clear". The Sun Online. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  7. ^ a b c d Eric Gargiulo (March 17, 2008). "WWE Diva & Playboy cover girl, Maria speaks to phillyBurbs.com". PhillyBurbs.com. Retrieved 2008-06-14. 
  8. ^ a b c d "The Next WWE Diva Ultimately to be Chosen by the Millions of WWE fans Worldwide On September 13". WWE Corporate. 2004-07-12. Retrieved 2007-07-01. 
  9. ^ "RAW Results: August 16, 2004". Online World of Wrestling. August 16, 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  10. ^ a b c "Ashley Massaro of New York Wins WWE RAW Diva Search, Secures $250,000 One-Year Contract with WWE". WWE. August 15, 2005. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  11. ^ "RAW Results: July 4, 2005". Online World of Wrestling. July 4, 2005. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i "2006 Diva Search Interviews". FHM Online. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  13. ^ a b "WWE Diva Search Finalists Debut Tonight On Monday Night RAW". WWE Corporate. July 10, 2006. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  14. ^ a b "RAW Results: July 10, 2006". Online World of Wrestling. July 10, 2006. Retrieved 2007-08-07. 
  15. ^ Kara A. Medalis (August 22, 2007). "Special thanks to Velvet Revolver". WWE.com. Retrieved 2007-08-23. 
  16. ^ EveTorres.com (2007-10-29). "The 2007 Diva Search Winner is Eve Torres". EveTorres.com. Retrieved 2007-10-29. 
  17. ^ Andrew Rote (October 16, 2007). "Farewell Taryn". WWE. Retrieved 2007-10-20. 
  18. ^ Andrew Rote (October 9, 2007). "Farewell Jessica". WWE. Retrieved 2007-10-09. 
  19. ^ Andrew Rote (October 2, 2007). "Farewell J. Kim". WWE. Retrieved 2007-10-03. 
  20. ^ Kara A. Medalis (September 25, 2007). "Weekly roundup: Obstacle Course". WWE. Retrieved 2007-09-25. 
  21. ^ Kara A. Medalis (September 18, 2007). "Weekly roundup: Limbo". WWE. Retrieved 2007-09-25. 

See also[edit]

External links[edit]