Since 2019 women’s wrestling — aka joshi puroresu — promotion Stardom has been owned by Bushiroad, the same company which owns New Japan Pro-Wrestling. That’s led to the Stardom roster getting a chance to work matches ahead of New Japan’s annual Wrestle Kingdom event in the Tokyo Dome, but nothing more. NJPW and Stardom have remained almost wholly separate.
At a June 6 press conference celebrating their parent company’s 15th anniversary, New Japan’s Hiroshi Tanahashi & The Great-O-Khan, and Stardom’s Mayu Iwatani & Starlight Kid came together to announce a first — a joint show Nov. 20 in Tokyo’s Ariake Arena, a 15,000 seat venue built for the most recent Summer Olympics.
November 20 in the new Ariake Arena!— NJPW Global (@njpwglobal) June 6, 2022
NJPW and STARDOM combine forces for their first ever full joint card!
More information to follow on this immense event!https://t.co/t4IZuei3wF#njpw #STARDOM pic.twitter.com/ViTNfmaxZn
At the press conference, Bushiroad founder & President Takaaki Kidani said of the event:
“In America, men and women are often on the same cards, but it’s rare in Japan, and a first for NJPW and STARDOM. This will go down in history.”
Nothing official was announced for the card, but both Tanahashi & Starlight Kid teased mixed tag matches. There was also an announcement that Stardom wrestlers will be added to mobile game NJPW Strong Spirits.
Will this show be a one-off, or a sign of more collaboration moving forward? Questions about Stardom crossing over with AEW have come up since the announcement of Forbidden Door. At the very least, this seems to be a step toward something like that happening.