It’s no secret how depressing 2020 ended up becoming from the ongoing COVID pandemic to so many inspirational figures lost across the entertainment world; among them was the tragic passing of hall of fame guitarist and rock icon Eddie Van Halen. One of those lives touched by the Van Halen co-founder was Ed Solomon, who revealed the rocker played a part in the creative inspiration behind the Bill & Ted franchise starting with Excellent Adventure tweeting, “[Eddie] was a big influence on Chris [Matheson] & me as we were writing Bill & Ted. In fact, when director Stephen Herek was reading the script, he got three pages in, stopped, put on ‘1984’ & resumed. We wanted the movie to be a cinematic ‘Jump.'”
By the time Solomon and Matheson were developing Face the Music, they made attempts to contact Van Halen to see if he can do anything for the film. “We tried to get him to do something – anything – in Face the Music, but they said he was unavailable and wouldn’t tell us why. Sadly, I think I know now,” Solomon tweeted. Given how many poured their condolences to the late rocker’s family and loved ones, the latest Bill & Ted plot, the stars could align themselves for the ultimate tribute concert. The film’s plot had the duo played by Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter in search of their future selves to find the song that unites the world. Meanwhile, their daughters Thea and Billie, played by Samara Weaving and Brigette Lundy-Paine, respectively, assembled history’s “greatest” band to help them out.
In recent years, news came out despite the band’s tumultuous history with their former members, but they’re still largely on speaking terms. The last touring group consisted of brothers Eddie and Alex Van Halen (drums), Eddie’s son Wolfgang Van Halen (bass), and original frontman David Lee Roth (lead vocals). Before Eddie’s passing, Sammy Hagar, who was the band’s vocalist after Roth’s original run and performed a reunion tour in the early 2000s, revealed he made peace with Eddie before his passing in an interview with Angi Taylor of Chicago’s 95.5 FM. He revealed what happened at the beginning of the year but chose to keep the reconciliation out of the press. “When I called him, after years of not speaking, back in February, I think, or January, whatever it was — before COVID — he said, ‘What took you so long?’ [Laughs] It put the biggest smile on my face. I said, ‘Oh my God. Don’t ask me.’ That was just very touching to me: ‘Hey, I’ve been waitin’.'”
Van Halen’s manager Irving Azoff confirmed original bassist Michael Anthony was penciled in for an upcoming reunion tour, but never materialized. If everything is copacetic now, perhaps we should be due for the ultimate tribute show to help bring those suffering from the 2020s to come together to a better place, because let’s face it, no matter where you come from in these difficult times, we can all use a win. Get Alex, Mike, Dave, Sammy, and Wolfie to all play together. Assemble the who’s who of the entertainment and music world from classic and contemporary rock acts, pop, R&B, hip-hop, and country. The world may not need saving, but it sure can use a win right now.