During the most recent episode of “83 Weeks”, Eric Bischoff went into detail on whether or not he’d take a job with AEW. He also discussed the advice he’d give the company about television and why he thinks it’s a tremendous benefit that TNT is going to cover the production costs for the show. Here are the highlights:
On If He’d Work For AEW:
That is such a hard question to answer. Obviously, any opportunity in a business that I have been involved in for the past 30 years would definitely pique my interest. So much of it depends on what I don’t know. What are AEW’s goals? What is their strategy? What are their plans? What are their 5-year business plans? I have learned the hard way that if you really don’t have a plan that has been well vetted and really thought through the chances of being successful are minimal. I really don’t want to be involved with something that is really not well planned.
With that being said, if it was well planned and there were a great strategy and a great business plan that made sense that I can relate to or identify with then of course. Look, I may be 64 years old and may have been in the business for 30+ years but there is a part of me that is passionate about the business. I love the creative side. I love the strategy of building things from scratch so that is very appealing to me, but I really wouldn’t want to get involved with something; whether it’s AEW or something else. If it is not well-funded or if there’s not a really smart business plan, the chances of it of being successful 5-10 years from now is really minimal. I really would have a hard time getting excited about something that wasn’t thought through and there wasn’t a solid plan. The flip side of that, if there was, oh hell yeah.
On What He’d Need To Know To Give AEW Any Advice About Television:
I don’t know what AEW’s goals are. I have no idea. I have no idea what the AEW business plan is. I have no idea what their risk tolerance is. I have no idea what their Plan B is. I am just like everybody else watching, reading and seeing it. I refuse to try and sound like I am smart enough to give advice to an organization I know nothing about. I just don’t. In a macro kind of way, be as different as you can possibly be. It worked for me. It was my self-mandate when I started Nitro; don’t try to be better than the competition, try to be different. Hopefully being different is enough to want to have people check you out, and I would stick with that.
On TNT Covering Production Costs Being A Huge Benefit To AEW:
I only know what I read; if what I read is true and the AEW/TNT deal is that TNT is going to cover the cost of production; which to me says that TNT is going to actually produce it with their equipment, their crews, because that’ll make sense and it will also minimize the expense compared to a third-party production company. I am assuming that TNT is going to actually provide the physical production of the show and they are going to split on some percentage basis, let’s say 50/50 and they’ll split the advertising revenue.
Here is what I do know, this isn’t something that I feel slightly intimidated about saying: selling advertising in pro wrestling is extremely difficult because pro wrestling is not a drama, but it is. It is not a sitcom, but it is. It is not a sport, but it is. It is its own weird kind of duck. It is really hard to get big advertisers, some mainstream advertisers, the ones that spend 80 percent of revenue in the ad market, it is hard to get them comfortable with professional wrestling simply because they can’t define it.
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