‘Bill & Ted’ Almost Had a Time Traveling Van and a Dog
by B. Alan Orange
‘Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure’ writer Ed Solomon shares his early notes, revealing that Rufus was originally a 28 year old sophomore.
Last we heard, Bill & Ted 3 was happening soon or not at all according to star Alex Winter. The actor-turned-director is still promoting his latest documentary Deep Web, which actually reunites him with his Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure co-star Keanu Reeves, who provided the narration. While we don't exactly have another update on Bill & Ted 3, Alex Winter did share some interesting early notes on the original movie.
These pages come from Ed Solomon, who wrote both Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure and Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey with Chris Matheson. They are also penning Bill & Ted 3. Here, we get to see some of the early ideas the duo had for their iconic time traveling teenagers. While the basic idea remains intact, there were a few important changes made. First off, the title was Bill and Ted's Time Van. They were still a couple of losers in a band called Wyld Stallyns, but their two best friends were a 28 year old Sophomore named Rufus and his very intelligent sidekick canine named DogRufus. This was probably an ode to Mr. Peabody and Sherman. Rufus, of course, eventually morphed into the character played by George Carlin and the dog was discarded. And a green van decked out with the Wyld Stallyns logo did show up in Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey, but it wasn't capable of time travel. Maybe that will change in Bill & Ted 3.
While we only get to see one page of this treatment, the story still focuses on these two high schoolers needing to get an A on their history exam. Only here, they would have gathered all of their historical figures in the back of Rufus' van with the help of a smart aleck dog. Ed Solomon (which spelled backwards is De Nomolos, the name of the main villain in Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey) also shares a page of original dialogue, which finds Bill and Ted arguing over who gets to play guitar and who get to sing. Ted is obviously very excited about getting to play the keyboards. We've transcribed the written page as best we could here, along with the page images from Alex Winter's Twitter:
Bill and Ted's Time Van
(Note: I filled in some extra words I deciphered. - Ani)
Bill and Ted are two 16-17 year old high school (illegible). They do poorly in school, aren't popular, fail P.E., hang out with the 28 year old sophomore Rufus. They form a band called WYLD STALLYNS - an air-guitar band. When we first meet them, they're working out the band's trademark - a horse with a (illegible) face, a phallic guitar, and scores of girls surrounding it, on their knees. They go to school, in Rufus' van - Rufus has a dog named Dogrufus that's very smart. They go to history class, where they sit near RANDOLPH and his football playing buddies, and Susi and her cheerleader friends. They have a report due. They did an entire film but forgot to load the camera. They're in deep shit. If they don't pass history, they're out. All the other kids laugh at them. Bill and Ted dress in lowriding jeans, their boxers coming out the tops. In P.E., they get pruned in wrestling instantly as they're very (illegible) and (illegible). They're sent to the principal. They're in big trouble. If they don't get an 'A' in history...
Bill & Ted 3 is in development and stars Alex Winter, Keanu Reeves. The film is directed by Dean Parisot.