The wrestling landscape drastically changed today as All Elite Wrestling confirmed a partnership with TNT that will their weekly television show air for two hours each week on TNT Drama.
In their Twitter statement, AEW confirmed some details of their deal, and seemingly took a shot at WWE when they said their new promotion will offer “less scripted soapy drama”.
— All Elite Wrestling (@AEWrestling) May 15, 2019
At the WarnerMedia upfronts, Cody and his wife Brandi spoke to WrestlingNews.co about how this huge deal came to be, and explained what it means to them personally:
“This is serendipity how this is coming together. My family moved to Atlanta 20+ years ago because WCW was going to Turner. Here we are talking about All Elite Wrestling in 2019 going to Turner. It’s just wild how it works and the number 1 thing I discovered is we build the best team. That’s what led to all of this. All In happened, me, Matt and Nick, Kenny joining and then Tony Khan being the guy to say ‘hey, I believe in you guys. I’ll invest in you guys, I believe in wrestling outside of one company.’ That has put us here so I’m really excited.”
Cody, a former WWE star in his own right, said that unlike his former company, AEW will not be scripting promos. Cody said he has faith in the people he has signed to deliver promos without them having been all laid out. This has been a major issue for WWE, for fans and critics alike believing that the dialogue between stars often comes off as forced:
“When it comes to promos, if we invested you, we already know your voice,” Cody said. “We just want to put the voice out there for more people to hear. There’s great coaches we have, great collaborators. Guys like Jim Ross, guys like Billy Gunn, a bunch of guys I can’t name. We have these great collaborators, plus all of us who want to make this work. Collaboration yes, micromanagement no, scripted no, that’s the best.”
AEW really wants to distance itself from WWE, and any other wrestling promotion for that matter. Cody’s wife Brandi emphasised that their new promotion will be more sports-focused.
“We’re honest when we say that we want it to be very sports-centric. In order to do that, it has to be focused on the bell-to-bell, the actual matches, less of the drama and the behind-the-scenes.”
Brandi also discussed the women’s division in AEW, and one of the potential issues that the new company have already faced, and are trying to overcome:
“We’ve obviously been cautious in building our [women’s] division because we don’t want people to be sitting weeks and weeks out of the year not being active, not being used, not being having stories, not having reasons for you to like them. So we’ve been very careful to pick and choose competitors that we think we are gonna be able to keep moving in some sort of sense.”
Finally, Cody spoke about his plans for AEW’s first official show Double or Nothing, which is set to take place in Las Vegas on May, 25:
“Jim Ross has been really good about saying ‘it can’t be good, it’s gotta be great.’ He’s right and everyone in the group shares that sentiment. We gotta make this great and it’s just the beginning. It’s the perfect jumping in point for a brand new fan. There’s nothing before this, just jump in now and you’ll love it.
Thanks to WrestlingInc. for the transcription.