The head of All Elite Wrestling AEW President Tony Khan recently appeared on the AEW Unrestricted podcast. He talks about the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, how it has affected the AEW Dynamite show on TNT. The moment he knew he had to cancel “Blood And Guts.” and which Dynamite ideas were inspired by “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” and “Saved By The Bell.”
Khan On How AEW Is Presenting The Show Now:
“I watched a lot of other programming. I watched a lot of wrestling, and I watch a lot of other stuff, too, and try to get a feel for what people were doing with the restrictions and without an audience. And the thing that really captivated me?
I have a really good friend who is a writer for Jimmy Fallon, and he works on The Tonight Show. I watched the shows Jimmy Fallon was doing without an audience, and he had his writers and his band in the studio. It is just a small group of people, but their laughter? It made all the difference. And I watched other talk shows where they were just out there kind of cold? And I thought that the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon were really onto something.
And then the next day it was ‘oh we could have a babyface side and a heel side, this will be great, it’s like two sidelines. That was good too and then I started to think about it as a ‘rogues gallery’ and I was just brainstorming on stuff like Saved By The Bell. ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if MJF and [Shawn] Spears were like Zack and Slater making football bets, but wrestling bets like [those characters] would make. I was just trying to have fun with it.”
Khan revealed Shawn Spears and Colt Cabana were initially going to be used for color commentary prior to Chris Jericho saying he wanted to do it.
“To be honest, I didn’t have anybody to do it, and Colt and Spears were wrestling a ton as it was, and if you talk about stuff that would have been challenging for continuity, I was gonna have Colt and Spears split it up,” Khan revealed. “I was gonna have Spear do a lot of it, and I was gonna have Colt because we had very few people there. They would have been great. Colt has been great on commentary, and Spears has been great. They’ve been great on Dark. Colt’s done some stuff and has been great on Dynamite too, but Chris is one of the greatest of all time, and also now, Chris is one of the best commentators of all time.”
Khan Admitted AEW Has Lost Millions:
“This was going to be the best run of business we’ve ever had. And we’ve lost millions and millions and millions of dollars in live events, and I don’t take it lightly, but I can’t take it out on the people that work here cause it’s not their fault,” he added. “We’ve really never let anybody go here as a company. I’m gonna be honest. There’s gonna be a day when someday we’re going to have to, but now is not the time.”
Catch up on all those details by listening to the full AEW Unrestricted podcast.