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To celebrate the release of Bill and Ted Face the Music on BluRay and on-demand, Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves dropped by The Tonight Show on Tuesday night to share memories of early auditions and what it was like to learn musical instruments for the new movie.
Noting that the characters was first introduced to audiences 30 years ago with Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Fallon acknowledged that people have been waiting for this movie for so long (there was a sequel in 1991). Asking the actors where this one picks up, Reeves laughed that Bill and Ted “haven’t written the song yet,” and it’s causing problems with their families in the story.
Winter explained that it took a long time to get the film made, and neither he nor Reeves did the voices until late in the process of the third movie going ahead. “The writers were looking at us like, are they going to do it?” he laughed.
The actors met during early auditions for the first Bill and Ted, bonding over the fact that they both ride motorcycles. “We became friends over the arduous audition circuit,” said Winter, adding that they didn’t believe they would be cast.
Fallon shared that he always disliked auditioning, but Winter and Reeves did have some fun in the auditions. They said they walked in completely in their characters, complete with the style of clothing. Winter had the iconic shirt slung around his waist; Reeves had the shorts.
“It was pop culture at its best,” said Fallon, of the enduring legacy of the movies. He showed his guests a Bill and Ted-themed cinnamon breakfast cereal, which the actors warned him not to eat. Luckily, it was vintage, and Fallon knew not to even try.
Winter said that the studio never gave them a heads up about branded items that were releasing, and he remembers walking into the store at 1 a.m. in the morning and being surprised to see some Bill and Ted themed groceries.
Speaking about the soundtrack — which is nominated for a Grammy this year — Winter and Reeves recalled learning instruments for the movie. Well, kind of. “Keanu actually learned every instrument he played, which was hilarious,” said Winter, with Reeves adding that he learned one note of all of them.” Those included theremin, bagpipes, trumpet and various percussion instruments.
Throughout the virtual interview, Reeves played up to the camera by moving his face close to the lens, filling the screen and being playful — just like his character.
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