Former AEW producer Keith Mitchell was a recent guest on the Talk Is Jericho podcast. During the interview, he revealed when the idea of AEW was first brought up to him.

“First of all I got a phone call from several different wrestling friends. You know, kind of hung out at the Red River Saloon after hours at Impact for years. Kaz and Chris Daniels both called me, ‘hey, you should talk to this guy.’ You know the wrestling business,” he told Jericho. “There has been a rich person that’s going to come in and change the business every six months like clockwork.”

Keith Mitchell then reflected back on before AEW had an official show. The veteran producer revealed that he and Tony Khan actually had a meeting with Showtime about them putting on AEW, as Turner was backing off in that moment.

“When I took the job we didn’t have a show. Tony and I were talking about that last night, meeting with Showtime. In fact, when we met with Showtime, Turner was backing off of the deal,” he revealed. “And Showtime gave him at least the knowledge, or the security that someone else may well be interested. It was a great time because, you know it was the Fox deal they were talking billions of dollars. All of a sudden, there’s a lot more money on the table.”

Since its inception, AEW has had plenty of success. However, Keith Mitchell revealed the specific moment when he knew that the company would be a hit. For him, it was all about the early ticket sales for the MGM event.

“Right out of the gate,” Mitchell knew it would be a hit. “The biggest part of this industry is selling tickets. When MGM sold out in 30 minutes I knew there was no doubt that this was going to be successful. I knew we could do the shows because Tony had the money. Money, and experience, and passion, you put those together and it’s a success.”

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Talk Is Jericho with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription. 

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