Saturday, October 31, 2020

WarnerMedia Execs Tout AEW’s Success Ahead Of Dynamite Anniversary

All Elite Wrestling is approaching the 1-year anniversary of AEW Dynamite, the company’s flagship television series that has made an indelible impact on the professional wrestling industry.

Variety has published an in-depth look at the meteoric rise of AEW. From the first episode of Dynamite last October, to being forced to adapt and ultimately thrive during the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been a remarkable year.

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The article features quotes from AEW President Tony Khan, Executive Vice Presidents Cody and Brandi Rhodes, World Champion Jon Moxley and Chris Jericho.

Cody says AEW is like his child. “It really is my baby in terms of how I feel about AEW and how I feel about the roster. Even people who are older than me, I think of them as my kids.”

Chris Jericho addressed his Demo God moniker and the ‘Wednesday Night War’ with WWE’s NXT brand. “We don’t really pay attention to what they do during the show,” Jericho said. “But afterwards, of course, you check in the ratings.”

AEW has been the clear-cut viewership victor over NXT as the first year comes to a close.

Jon Molxey once again pointed out the factors that separate AEW from his former home (and industry leader), WWE. “We let our talent speak in their own voice, say what they want to say, stay with the feeling, and it creates authentic moments.”

Also quoted in the piece are several WarnerMedia executives. AEW has developed a strong relationship with their corporate partner. After surprising everyone with the early success of AEW Dynamite, the two sides extended their partnership through 2023. A new one-hour weekly television show will premiere in 2021.

Brett Weitz, General Manager of TNT, TBS and truTV, said he was amazed at Tony Khan’s ability to pivot and grow when COVID hit. “He was able to keep those storylines going and put so many great things together, even through a global pandemic, and that tells you everything you need to know about the DNA of that brand and that guy as a producer.”

Sam Linsky, Senior Vice President and co-head of scripted originals for TNT, TBS and truTV, says they are eager to grow the AEW brand across their broad network of platforms.

“We’ve got a comic book company. We’ve got video game companies. We’ve got merchandising people. We’ve got people who make animation for television. We’ve got reality television producers. It’s all in house. So we have a real opportunity to spread this IP and grow it across WarnerMedia.”

Visit Variety to read the full article.

AEW will officially celebrate the 1-year anniversary of Dynamite on the Wednesday, October 14th episode. Jon Moxley is scheduled to defend the AEW World Championship against #1 contender Lance Archer, who has been out of action after contracting COVID-19.

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