Fans have been waiting over 25 years for Bill & Ted 3 to come to fruition, but over the last decade, one big question has remained: what will happen to Rufus? Rufus, the trench-coat wearing mentor to Bill S. Preston Esquire (Alex Winter) and Ted Theodore Logan (Keanu Reeves), was played by the iconic comedian George Carlin, who sadly passed away in 2008 at the age of 71, from heart failure. Ed Solomon revealed in a new interview that this new movie, entitled Bill & Ted Face the Music, will in fact address the absence of Rufus, while also paying homage to this beloved character.
"George Carlin is so deeply missed by all of us. There is a... not just an homage to him, it's more than that. His absence is a part of the whole movie."
We've known for quite some time that this story will be set in present day, featuring Bill and Ted as adults in their 50s, with wives and children. As foretold in the first two movies, Bill and Ted, with their band Wyld Stallyns, were supposed to literally write the song that would save the world, but all these years later, they still haven't done it yet. Ed Solomon reveals in this new interview that one of his favorite scenes from the script has Bill and Ted travelling back in time to visit their past selves, along with Rufus, using footage from Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure. Keanu Reeves did tease back in 2014 that there would be a wormhole involved, so perhaps that's how they travel back in time. Here's what he had to say about this scene, teasing that, once again, strange things are afoot at the Circle K.
"There's actually a scene, one of my favourite scenes in the whole movie, where middle-aged, 50-year-old Bill and Ted return to the Circle K and see their teen selves and Rufus, and actually interact with their teenage selves, played by their actual teenage selves. They return to that scene at the Circle K when Bill and Ted first meet themselves, only now they're watching their younger selves and looking at the exuberance and joy that they had at that time in their lives. And they see Rufus, they see George Carlin. There's also a character in the movie named Kelly, which is George's daughter's name, who has a very significant role in the journey, so George is a deep, deep part of it."
This falls in line with an update Alex Winter gave back in 2014, where he teased this sequel would feature multiple Bill and Teds. Ed Solomon also confirmed that he has been taking meetings all the time, and that the movie, "keeps getting close" to a green-light, but it hasn't happened yet. He said one of the main reasons in trying to land financing is that no one wants to continue the story, they want to reboot the property instead. Here's what Ed Solomon had to say about the financing difficulties they've been facing.
"We are having issues raising money for it, getting it financed, because what we get all the time, all the time, is people wanting to reboot it. It's 'Let's do Bill & Ted with new teenagers', but what we wanna do is the story of Bill and Ted as middle-aged men, and tell what we think could be a really funny, and actually really moving, story about their lives and where they are now - their families, their kids. (It) wasn't released (widely) internationally and didn't have a giant release in the States. But it's one of those movies that has grown over time. I'm certain that whoever invests in this could make their money back, and hopefully a lot more. It's never gonna be a movie that me and Chris Matheson get rich on. I've never made much money off of Bill & Ted. We never get profits from it, our salaries were very small from it, but it's the one movie in my life that... if I'd never done anything but Bill & Ted, I would've been really happy. Chris and I have said this to each other many times, if the only thing we put into the world ever was this notion of 'Be excellent to each other', we could look each other in the eye and feel like we did something right. I really feel that, and I'm really proud of that."
Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter have long been attached to reprise their roles, with Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest) attached to direct since August 2012. As of now, this long-awaited sequel still doesn't have a green light, but hopefully there will be some traction on it soon. You can head on over to Digital Spy for their full interview with Ed Solomon.