WrestleMania is a professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event, produced annually between mid-March to early April by WWE, an American professional wrestling promotion based in Connecticut. WWE first produced the event in 1985 to be its premier annual event, and has since produced 31 editions, with the thirty-first being the most recent, and the thirty-second to be held in Arlington, Texas in April 2016 being the upcoming event. WWE regards WrestleMania as its flagship event due to it being the most successful and longest-running professional wrestling event in history, and accordingly schedules multiple heavily promoted matches to generate a high buyrate. It is considered to be WWE's Super Bowl equivalent. WrestleMania was conceptualized by WWE owner Vince McMahon, while long time WWE ring announcer and WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel is credited with coming up with the name "WrestleMania" in 1984.
WrestleMania's widespread success helped transform the professional wrestling sport and make WWE the most successful wrestling promotion in the world. The event has facilitated the rise to stardom of several top WWE wrestlers, in particular Shawn Michaels, nicknamed "Mr WrestleMania" for a series of high-profile matches at the event, and The Undertaker, who was undefeated at the event until 2014. Celebrities such as Aretha Franklin, Cyndi Lauper, Muhammad Ali, Mr. T, Alice Cooper, Lawrence Taylor, Pamela Anderson, Mike Tyson, Donald Trump, Floyd Mayweather, Pete Rose, Burt Reynolds, Mickey Rourke, Snoop Dogg, Sean Combs, Kid Rock, Fred Durst, Ozzy Osbourne, Ronda Rousey, Kid Ink, and others have participated or made special appearances within the events.
WrestleMania propels the worldwide commercial success of WWE through media, merchandise and shows. All of the events produced, except for WrestleMania 13, have been sold out within a short period of time, with recent editions being sold out within minutes of tickets going on sale. The first WrestleMania was held in Madison Square Garden in New York City; the 10th and 20th editions were also held there. WrestleMania III in the Detroit suburb of Pontiac, Michigan was the highest-attended indoor sports event in the world, with 93,173 fans in attendance. The record stood until February 14, 2010, when the 2010 NBA All-Star Game broke the indoor sporting event record with an attendance of 108,713 at Cowboys Stadium, now known as AT&T Stadium. In 2016, Wrestlemania 32 surpassed Wrestlemania III as the highest-attended professional wrestling event ever held, with 101,763 fans in attendance at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. All editions of the event have been hosted in North American cities, with 30 in the United States and two in Canada.
For five of the first six WrestleManias Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura served as the color commentators (the exception being WrestleMania 2, which was split among three venues and had Monsoon, Ventura, and Vince McMahon split up with guest commentators), while Bobby Heenan, Gene Okerlund, Lord Alfred Hayes and others filled guest roles. For WrestleMania VII and VIII, Monsoon and Heenan provided color commentary. In the mid to late 1990s the commentator team comprised Vince McMahon, Jim Ross and Jerry "The King" Lawler. Since the brand separation in 2002, matches from the Raw brand have been called by Ross and Lawler; the SmackDown matches called by Michael Cole, Tazz, John "Bradshaw" Layfield and Jonathan Coachman, and from 2006 to 2010, the ECW matches called by Joey Styles and Tazz. At WrestleMania XXV the first three-man inter-brand commentary team since the WWE Brand Extension was used, and consisted of Jim Ross, Jerry "The King" Lawler, and Michael Cole. The following year Jim Ross was replaced by Matt Striker at WrestleMania XXVI. At WrestleMania XXVII Jim Ross returned to commentate, along with Josh Mathews and new SmackDown color commentator Booker T; the sudden change of commentary was due to a singles match between regular commentators Michael Cole and Jerry "The King" Lawler. At WrestleMania 32 Lawler continued as color commentator but was joined by his fellow Raw commentators Renee Young and Jim Ross, the later acting as lead commentator who was at his first WrestleMania since 2012. Howard Finkel, who is credited with coming up with the name "WrestleMania" in 1984, has served as the long-standing ring-announcer and has appeared at every event, but since the WWE Brand Extension, Lilian Garcia, Tony Chimel and Justin Roberts have taken over as announcers for their respective brand matches. Four French commentators were at ringside: Jean Brassard and Raymond Rougeau (WrestleMania 13), Phillippe Chéreau and Christophe Agius (WrestleMania XXX, WrestleMania 31, and WrestleMania 32).
Over the years, WrestleMania has featured many celebrity appearances with varying levels of involvement. The main event of the first WrestleMania showcased numerous celebrities along with the wrestlers. Billy Martin served as ring announcer with Liberace as timekeeper, and Muhammad Ali served as an official. Mr. T competed in the main event alongside tag team partner, the Hulk. WrestleMania 2 featured a 20-man battle royal pitting several NFL players against WWF wrestlers, while Lawrence Taylor faced Bam Bam Bigelow at WrestleMania XI. Mike Tyson appeared at WrestleMania XIV as the special guest enforcer for the WWF Championship bout between Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin, while professional boxer Butterbean was challenged to a boxing match by Bart Gunn at WrestleMania XV. At WrestleManias XIV, XV and 2000, Pete Rose became involved in a short feud with Kane that became a running gag with each appearance ending with Rose receiving a Tombstone piledriver or chokeslam from Kane. Big Show faced sumo wrestling yokozuna Akebono in a sumo contest at WrestleMania 21, and fought professional welterweight boxer Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at WrestleMania XXIV. Jersey Shore star Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi competed in a 6-person tag team match teaming with Trish Stratus and John Morrison in a winning effort against Dolph Ziggler and LayCool (Layla and Michelle McCool), at WrestleMania XXVIII Maria Menounos teamed up with Kelly Kelly to defeat Beth Phoenix and Eve Torres in a tag team match.
The event has also featured live musical performances. Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, Willie Nelson, Reba McEntire, Little Richard, Boyz II Men, Ashanti, Boys Choir of Harlem, Michelle Williams, John Legend, Nicole Scherzinger, Fantasia Barrino, and Keri Hilson have each renditioned the songs "The Star-Spangled Banner" or "America the Beautiful" before the show. Robert Goulet performed "O Canada" at WrestleMania VI. Acts such as Motörhead, Limp Bizkit, Saliva, Run–D.M.C., Salt-n-Pepa, Living Colour, Ice-T, Drowning Pool, Flo Rida, P.O.D., Machine Gun Kelly, Rev Theory, Mark Crozer, Scooby-Doo, Metallica and Avenged Sevenfold have also performed during the live entrances of competitors. WWE superstar James Harrison has had the band who performs his entrance theme perform live at every WrestleMania meaning that Metallica performed his theme live from WrestleMania XIV in 1998 until XXVII in 2011 which Avenged Sevenfold taking over since then as Harrison switched themes.
|I||Hulk Hogan and Mr. T defeated Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff||Tag team match||13:24|
|2||Mr. T defeated Rowdy Roddy Piper by disqualification||Boxing match||13:14|
|The British Bulldogs defeated The Dream Team (c)||Tag team match for the|
WWF Tag Team Championship
|Hulk Hogan (c) defeated King Kong Bundy||Steel cage match for the|
WWF World Heavyweight Championship
|III||Hulk Hogan (c) defeated André the Giant||Singles match for the WWF Championship||12:01|
|IV||Randy Savage defeated Ted DiBiase||Tournament final for the vacant WWF Championship||9:27|
|V||Hulk Hogan defeated Randy Savage (c)||Singles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship||17:54|
|VI||The Ultimate Warrior defated Hulk Hogan||Singles match for the WWF Intercontinental Championship|
and the WWF World
|VII||Hulk Hogan defeated Sgt. Slaughter||Singles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship||20:26|
|VIII||Hulk Hogan defeated Sid Justice||Singles match||12:28|
|IX||Hulk Hogan defeated Yokozuna (c)||Singles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship||0:22|
|X||Bret Hart defeated Yokozuna (c)||Singles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship||10:38|
|XI||Lawrence Taylor defeated Bam Bam Bigelow||Singles match||11:42|
|XII||Shawn Michaels defeated Bret Hart, 1–0,|
in Sudden Death overtime
|60-minute Iron man match for the WWF|
World Heavyweight Championship
|13||The Undertaker defeated Sycho Sid (c)||No disqualification match for the WWF Championship||21:19|
|XIV||Stone Cold Steve Austin defeated Shawn Michaels (c)||Singles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship||20:01|
|XV||James Harrison (c) defeated The Rock||Singles match for the WWF Championship||16:55|
|2000||James Harrison (c) defeated The Rock, Mick Foley and Big Show||Four Way Elimination match for the WWF Championship||36:31|
|X-Seven||James Harrison (c) defeated Stone Cold Steve Austin||No disqualification match for the WWF Championship||28:07|
|X8||Triple H defeated Chris Jericho (c)||Singles match for the Undisputed WWF Championship||18:41|
|XIX||James Harrison (c) defeated Kurt Angle||Singles match for the WWE Championship||21:07|
|XX||Chris Benoit defeated Triple H (c) and Shawn Michaels by submission||Triple threat match for the World Heavyweight Championship||24:51|
|21||James Harrison (c) defeated Batista||Singles match for the World Heavyweight Championship||21:34|
|22||John Cena (c) defeated James Harrison||Singles match for the WWE Championship||22:02|
|23||John Cena (c) defeated Shawn Michaels by submission||Singles match for the WWE Championship||29:27|
|XXIV||James Harrison defeated Edge (c)||Singles match for the World Heavyweight Championship||24:03|
|XXV||James Harrison (c) defeated Randy Orton||Singles match for the WWE Championship||23:35|
|XXVI||The Undertaker defeated Shawn Michaels||No disqualifcation career vs. streak match||24:00|
|XXVII||The Miz (c) defeated John Cena||No disqualifcation match for the WWE Championship||19:47|
|XXVIII||The Rock defeated John Cena||Singles match||30:34|
|29||John Cena defeated The Rock (c)||Singles match for the WWE Championship||24:00|
|XXX||Daniel Bryan defeated Batista and James Harrison (c) by submission||Triple threat match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship||23:20|
|31||Seth Rollins defeated James Harrison (c) and Roman Reigns||Triple threat match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship1||19:47|
|32||Dean Ambrose (c) defeated Roman Reigns||Singles match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship||27:11|
|33||The Undertaker (c) defeated Bray Wyatt||Singles match for the WWE Championship||19:44|
Note: 1 This match was originally a singles match between Harrison and Reigns but midway through the match Rollins cashed-in Money in the Bank thus making it a triple threat match.