Our exclusive 2006 interview with co-writer Michael Aiello!

Once again co-writer (and this year director!) of Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights Bill & Ted show took the time to answer some questions about this year's show!  Not bad!!!


Bill & Ted's Excellent Online Adventure:  It's another year, another Halloween show!  Were you able to find enough good inspiration in the events of the past year to put together another great show?
Michael Aiello:
I think so!  Every year there are a few pop culture moments that simply must be highlighted.  <<Cough - Tom Cruise - cough>>  The challenge is to present these moments in such a way that is different than what has already been seen.  I think we accomplished that this year.

B&TEOA: The show is returning to the Wild West Stage this year.  Were there any special challenges in writing the show to fit this venue again?
Mike: I am thrilled to be back in the Wild West / Fear Factor arena.  It is where the show was born and where, in my opinion, it truly thrives.  The Toon Arena over at Islands of Adventure was great but the show in West is a much more intimate experience.  The only real difficulty was having to conform to an existing set rather than have one built from scratch.  This was a new challenge for Kenny and I since we have been writing in Toon for 4 years.

B&TEOA: What's it like working with Kenny Babel on the scripts?  Do you each have particular strengths you bring, like one of you works more on the plot and the other on the jokes or is it really divided evenly?
Mike: Working with Kenny is an absolute joy.  Kenny is a fountain of ideas, they just keep coming.  He is a truly brilliant and gifted individual.  When we write the show, we pretty much throw bits and jokes at each other and we see what sticks.  We act out bits in our office make a lot of noise and laugh constantly.  In no way do we consider writing this show "work".

We normally start with looking at the previous year's show.  We ask ourselves, what worked, and what didn't work.  From there, we decide what would we like to do to Bill and Ted this year.  Since the show started 15 years ago, Bill and Ted have been thrown into all kinds of situations, they've been killed and we've even turned one of them evil.  What will we do this year to change them up, how will we keep them renewed so to speak.  We then decide who our main villain will be and then what is his reason for being there.  From there we start deciding characters and funny bits and situations for each character.  Then we meditate and sacrifice gummy bears to the god of creativity.

B&TEOA: When you and Kenny aren't working on the Bill & Ted Halloween Show at this time of the year what are your jobs at Universal Studios?  Mike: Kenny has been performing at universal in a number of shows since the day the park opened and continues to do so to this day.  I am a show director for Universal Orlando.  I write and direct shows for the parks all year round and was thrilled to direct my first Bill and Ted this year.

B&TEOA: Can you give us a sneak peek of some of the things fans are going to see this year?
Mike: You will definitely see a different side of Bill and Ted this year.

B&TEOA: Is there any subject which you've agreed can't be touched or parodied, either for sensitivity or copyright reasons?
Mike: We are a theme park business so there are always areas which present some challenge.  It is a PG-13 show so we can get pretty edgy but there is a line.

B&TEOA: What do you think is the appeal of having Bill & Ted head the show each year?
Mike: To me, Bill and Ted represent the audience.  They are the everyman thrown into the unbelievable situation.  They are heroes and rock stars.  The audience latches on to them and relates to their brand of humor.

B&TEOA: The show is such a fan favorite at Halloween Horror Nights.  Will the show (hopefully) continue for years to come?
Mike
: This year has been a great success so I hope so!  I need the gig.  I've got a family to feed!