Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey (1991)

PG | 98 mins | Comedy, Adventure | 19 July 1991

Director:

Pete Hewitt

Producer:

Scott Kroopf

Cinematographer:

Oliver Wood

Production Designer:

David L. Snyder

Production Company:

Interscope Communications
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HISTORY

”Bill” and “Ted” were characters created by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon for Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989, see entry), a surprise box office success. A sequel was proposed even before the first film left the theaters, according to a 12 Mar 1989 LAT news item. Just over eight months later, on 26 Nov 1989, the LAT reported that several titles, including Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, Bill & Ted’s Weird Journey, Bill & Ted Go to Hell, and The Second Coming of Bill & Ted were being considered. However, throughout 1990 and early 1991, various contemporary sources referred to the film as Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure II, and a 2 May 1991 announcement in Rolling Stone identified the film as Bill and Ted Go to Mars. One week prior to the film’s opening, producer Scott Kroopf responded to a question about the title, Bill & Ted Go to Hell, saying, “The problem was … we couldn’t advertise on TV until after 9 o’clock.”
       On 17 Aug 1990, the HR predicted that production would begin 3 Jan 1991. However, a 22 Jan 1991 HR production chart indicated that principal photography began 7 Jan 1991. Production notes stated that filming took place in and around Los Angeles, CA, as well as at studios in Santa Clarita, where twenty-five different sets were built on three soundstages. The climactic "Battle of the Bands" sequence was shot inside a “theatre” at Magic Mountain, an amusement park in Valencia, CA. The scene in the desert, an ... More Less

”Bill” and “Ted” were characters created by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon for Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989, see entry), a surprise box office success. A sequel was proposed even before the first film left the theaters, according to a 12 Mar 1989 LAT news item. Just over eight months later, on 26 Nov 1989, the LAT reported that several titles, including Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, Bill & Ted’s Weird Journey, Bill & Ted Go to Hell, and The Second Coming of Bill & Ted were being considered. However, throughout 1990 and early 1991, various contemporary sources referred to the film as Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure II, and a 2 May 1991 announcement in Rolling Stone identified the film as Bill and Ted Go to Mars. One week prior to the film’s opening, producer Scott Kroopf responded to a question about the title, Bill & Ted Go to Hell, saying, “The problem was … we couldn’t advertise on TV until after 9 o’clock.”
       On 17 Aug 1990, the HR predicted that production would begin 3 Jan 1991. However, a 22 Jan 1991 HR production chart indicated that principal photography began 7 Jan 1991. Production notes stated that filming took place in and around Los Angeles, CA, as well as at studios in Santa Clarita, where twenty-five different sets were built on three soundstages. The climactic "Battle of the Bands" sequence was shot inside a “theatre” at Magic Mountain, an amusement park in Valencia, CA. The scene in the desert, an homage to the episode of Star Trek (NBC, 8 Sep 1966—2 Sep 1969) that Bill and Ted view in their apartment, was filmed on location at Vasquez Rocks Park near Los Angeles. Production lasted twelve weeks, with a 3 May 1991 HR news item announcing that filming was complete. The picture marked director Pete Hewitt’s feature film debut.
       Nearly a year before the film’s release, on 17 Aug 1990, HR stated that Orion Pictures, which had distributed Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, would also release the sequel. Seven months later, however, a 28 Mar 1991 HR news item noted an apparent deal between Orion and Columbia Pictures that would transfer domestic distribution rights to Columbia. Ten days later, a 5 Apr 1991 DV article announced that the financially strapped Orion planned to “hold on” to Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, since it was part of a “potentially lucrative franchise.”
       The picture premiered on 18 Jul 1991 at the Mann Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, with a rock-star studded after-party at the Hollywood Palladium, as reported by several contemporary sources. The film opened nationwide the following day, earning $21 million in its first two weeks at the box-office, according to the Sep 1991 Box review. A 31 Jul 1991 LAT article stated that the single-screen Canyon Theatre in Bill and Ted’s “hometown” of San Dimas, CA, had not planned to show the film. However, the movie house responded to media and public outcry by removing Terminator 2 (1991, see entry) from the marquee in favor of Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey.
       End credits conclude with the following acknowledgements: “Filmed at Santa Clarita Studios, California, and on location in and around Los Angeles, California"; "Scenes from Star Trek courtesy of Paramount Pictures"; and, "Special thanks" to William Shatner. In keeping with the spirit of the film’s characters, a final quote appears onscreen after the copyright information: “Be Excellent to Each Other and Party On.”
       The first name of dolly grip Michael J. Coo is misspelled as “Micahel” in end credits. Second unit costumer Milton Mangum is also part of the "unprecedented additional photography" unit, in which he is incorrectly credited as "Milton Hangum." More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
Sep 1991.
---
Daily Variety
5 Apr 1991.
---
Daily Variety
19 Jul 1991
p. 2, 10.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Aug 1990.
---
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jan 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
28 Mar 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
3 May 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jul 1991
p. 12, 52.
Los Angeles Times
12 Mar 1989.
---
Los Angeles Times
26 Nov 1989.
---
Los Angeles Times
19 Jul 1991
p. 1.
Los Angeles Times
31 Jul 1991.
---
New York Times
19 Jul 1991
Section C, p.10.
Rolling Stone
2 May 1991.
---
Variety
22 Jul 1991
p. 55.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
An Orion® Pictures release
Nelson Entertainment presents
an Interscope Communications production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d unit dir, The non heinous 2d unit
1st asst dir, The non heinous 2d unit
2d asst dir, The non heinous 2d unit
Unit prod mgr, The unprecedented addl photog
1st asst dir, The unprecedented addl photog
2d asst dir, The unprecedented addl photog
2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Co-prod
Co-prod
Co-prod
Co-prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Exec prod
Supv producer
Co-exec prod
Co-exec prod
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op, The full on 1st unit
1st asst cam, The full on 1st unit
2d asst cam, The full on 1st unit
Gaffer, The full on 1st unit
Best boy, The full on 1st unit
Lighting tech, The full on 1st unit
Lighting tech, The full on 1st unit
Elec op, The full on 1st unit
Set lighting, The full on 1st unit
Key grip, The full on 1st unit
Dolly grip, The full on 1st unit
Grip, The full on 1st unit
Grip, The full on 1st unit
Grip, The full on 1st unit
Still photog
Still photog
Cam op, The non heinous 2d unit
Cam op, The non heinous 2d unit
1st asst cam, The non heinous 2d unit
2d asst cam, The non heinous 2d unit
Key grip, The non heinous 2d unit
Grip, The non heinous 2d unit
Gaffer, The non heinous 2d unit
Best boy, The non heinous 2d unit
Set lighting, The non heinous 2d unit
Cam op, The unprecedented addl photog
Cam op, The unprecedented addl photog
1st asst cam, The unprecedented addl photog
1st asst cam, The unprecedented addl photog
2d asst cam, The unprecedented addl photog
Key grip, The unprecedented addl photog
Best boy grip, The unprecedented addl photog
Dolly grip, The unprecedented addl photog
Lighting and grip equip by, The new age dudes
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Art dir, The full on 1st unit
Conceptual des, The full on 1st unit
Conceptual des/Prod illustrator, The full on 1st u
Conceptual des/Prod illustrator, The full on 1st u
Prod illustrator, The full on 1st unit
Prod illustrator, The full on 1st unit
Storyboard artist, The full on 1st unit
Storyboard artist, The full on 1st unit
Asst art dir, The full on 1st unit
Art dept coord, The full on 1st unit
Prod des, The unprecedented addl photog
Asst art dir, The unprecedented addl photog
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Film ed
1st asst ed
Asst ed
Asst ed
Post prod supv
Post prod asst
Post prod asst
Negative cutter, The new age dudes
Negative cutter, The new age dudes
SET DECORATORS
Set dec, The full on 1st unit
Set dec, The full on 1st unit
Set des, The full on 1st unit
Set des, The full on 1st unit
Set des, The full on 1st unit
Lead set dresser, The full on 1st unit
Set dresser, The full on 1st unit
Set dresser, The full on 1st unit
Set dresser, The full on 1st unit
Prop master, The full on 1st unit
Asst prop master, The full on 1st unit
Asst props, The full on 1st unit
Asst props, The full on 1st unit
Propmaker, The full on 1st unit
Propmaker, The full on 1st unit
Const coord, The full on 1st unit
Const foreman, The full on 1st unit
Labor foreman, The full on 1st unit
Paint supv, The full on 1st unit
Paint gang boss, The full on 1st unit
Standby painter, The full on 1st unit
Set dec, The unprecedented addl photog
Lead man, The unprecedented addl photog
Prop master, The unprecedented addl photog
Asst prop master, The unprecedented addl photog
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost supv, The full on 1st unit
Women's cost, The full on 1st unit
Men's cost, The full on 1st unit
Ward, The full on 1st unit
Ward, The full on 1st unit
Asst to Marie France, The full on 1st unit
Ward manufacturing, The full on 1st unit
Costumer, The non heinous 2d unit
Costumer, The unprecedented addl photog
MUSIC
Triumphant air guitars and addl mus for finale by
Sterling air guitars by
Mus ed
Asst mus ed
Soundtrack album exec prod
Mus supv
Rec eng
Addl rec eng
Addl rec eng
Mus score contracting by
Mus score contracting by
Soundtrack album prod coord
Mus coord
Addl lyrics for "The Reaper Rap"
SOUND
Prod sd mixer, The full on 1st unit
Boom op, The full on 1st unit
Utility sd tech, The full on 1st unit
Supv sd ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
Sd eff ed
ADR supv
ADR ed
ADR ed
Dial ed
Foley ed
Foley ed
Foley ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Apprentice sd ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec facilities
Machine op
Machine op
ADR mixer
ADR rec
Foley mixer
Foley rec
Foley artist
Foley artist
Sd mixer, The unprecedented addl photog
Boom man, The unprecedented addl photog
Utility sd tech, The unprecedented addl photog
VISUAL EFFECTS
Visual eff supv
Visual eff supv
Visual eff prod by
Spec eff coord, The full on 1st unit
Spec eff asst, The full on 1st unit
Spec eff asst, The full on 1st unit
Spec eff asst, The full on 1st unit
Spec eff asst, The full on 1st unit
Vid image supv, The bodacious vid image eff
Digital eff supv, The bodacious vid image eff
Digital eff supv, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff ed, The bodacious vid image eff
Ed asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Ed asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Ed asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Ed asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff coord, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff cam, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff cam, The bodacious vid image eff
Computer consultant, The bodacious vid image eff
Cam asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Matte cam, The bodacious vid image eff
Matte cam, The bodacious vid image eff
Miniature eff, The bodacious vid image eff
Miniature/Matte lineup, The bodacious vid image ef
Facility supv, The bodacious vid image eff
Facility supv, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff asst, The bodacious vid image eff
2D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
2D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
2D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
2D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
2D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
3D digital eff, The bodacious vid image eff
Chief matte artist, The bodacious vid image eff
Digital rotoscope, The bodacious vid image eff
Digital rotoscope, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod auditor, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod auditor, The bodacious vid image eff
Matte consultant, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Prod asst, The bodacious vid image eff
Video Image prod, The bodacious vid image eff
Video Image prod, The bodacious vid image eff
Video Image prod, The bodacious vid image eff
Video Image prod, The bodacious vid image eff
Video Image prod, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt facilities, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Eff eng, The bodacious vid image eff
Opt consultant, The bodacious vid image eff
Miniatures provided by
Miniatures provided by
Miniatures provided by
Chief modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Model designer, Stetson Visual Services
Key modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Key modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Key modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Key modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Key modelmaker, Stetson Visual Services
Model painter, Stetson Visual Services
Construction crew chief, Stetson Visual Services
Prod coord, Stetson Visual Services
Controller, Stetson Visual Services
Purchasing agent, Stetson Visual Services
Modelshop mgr, Stetson Visual Services
The atypical creature and makeup eff, Created and
Studio mgr, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypical
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Studio tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypica
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Mechanical tech, Kevin Yagher Productions, The aty
Process compositing by, Kevin Yagher Productions,
Sculptures by, Kevin Yagher Productions, The atypi
Robot choreog by, The atypical creature and makeup
Robot choreog by, The atypical creature and makeup
Wyld Stallyns graphics, The atypical creature and
Nelson prod exec, The atypical creature and makeup
Nelson prod supv, The atypical creature and makeup
Nelson prod coord, The atypical creature and makeu
Titles and opticals, The new age dudes
Main title seq des by, The new age dudes
UV lighting & flourescent eff by, The new age dude
MAKEUP
Creature eff and makeup created by
Makeup artist supv, The full on 1st unit
Makeup artist, The full on 1st unit
Hairstylist, The full on 1st unit
Addl hairstylist, The full on 1st unit
Addl hairstylist, The full on 1st unit
Makeup, The unprecedented addl photog
Hairstylist, The unprecedented addl photog
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Scr supv, The full on 1st unit
Prod coord
Asst to Pete Hewitt
Asst to Scott Kroopf
Prod secretary
Prod assoc
Prod accountant
Asst accountant
2d asst accountant
Financial representative
Loc mgr
Asst to the loc mgr
Unit pub
Casting assoc
Craft service
First aid
Transportation coord
Transportation capt
Catering
Catering
Catering
Extras casting
Extras casting
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Asst to Keanu Reeves
Prod intern
Puppeteer
Puppeteer
Puppeteer
Puppeteer
Puppeteer
Voice characterizations by
Voice characterizations by
Voice casting by
Transportation capt, The non heinous 2d unit
First aid, The non heinous 2d unit
Prod coord, The unprecedented addl photog
Scr supv, The unprecedented addl photog
Transportation coord, The unprecedented addl photo
Prod asst, The unprecedented addl photog
Concert prod mgr
Concert sd mixer
Concert equip tech
Drum tech
Guitar tech
Concert monitor mixer
Concert sd equip
Guitar coach
Drum coach
Concert equip supplied by
Concert equip supplied by
Concert equip supplied by
Concert equip supplied by
Product placement services, The new age dudes
Totally outstanding guitars by
STAND INS
Ted double
Bill double
Stunt coord
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
Stunt performer
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by, The new age dudes
Col timer, The new age dudes
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon for Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (Interscope Communications and Soisson/Murphey Productions, 1989).
SONGS
"The Reaper," written, performed & produced by Steve Vai, published by Sy Vy Music/OPC Music Publishing, Inc., courtesy of Relativity Records
"Shout It Out," performed by Slaughter, produced and arranged by Dana Strum & Mark Slaughter, written by Mark Slaughter & Dana Strum, published by Topless Music/Chrysalis Songs, courtesy of Chrysalis Records, Inc.
"The Perfect Crime," performed by Faith No More, produced by Matt Wallace and Faith No More, written by Faith No More, published by Vomit God Music/Big Thrilling Music, courtesy of Slash Records
+
SONGS
"The Reaper," written, performed & produced by Steve Vai, published by Sy Vy Music/OPC Music Publishing, Inc., courtesy of Relativity Records
"Shout It Out," performed by Slaughter, produced and arranged by Dana Strum & Mark Slaughter, written by Mark Slaughter & Dana Strum, published by Topless Music/Chrysalis Songs, courtesy of Chrysalis Records, Inc.
"The Perfect Crime," performed by Faith No More, produced by Matt Wallace and Faith No More, written by Faith No More, published by Vomit God Music/Big Thrilling Music, courtesy of Slash Records
"Showdown," performed by Love On Ice, produced by Rick Parashar, written by Dirk Sullivan, Dan Krueger & Stan Robinson, published by Virgin Music, Inc./Hair Pie Music, courtesy of Interscope Records
"Go To Hell," performed by Megadeth, produced by Max Norman & Dave Mustaine, written by Dave Mustaine & Megadeth, used by permission of Mustaine Music/Elfson Music/Asteroth Music/Adam Martin Music (all administered by Screen Gems - EMI Music, Inc.), courtesy of Capitol Records, Inc.
"Battle Stations," performed by Winger, produced by Beau Hill, written by Kip Winger & Reb Beach, published by Virgin Songs, Inc./Varseau Music, Inc./Small Hope Music Ltd./Blue 32 Music Ltd./Juliankelly Music, Inc./Virgin Music, Inc., courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corp.
"Junior's Gone Wild," performed by King's X, produced by Sam Taylor and King's X, written by Douglas T. Pinnick, Ty R. Taylor & Jerry Gaskill, published by Jetydosa Music/Ackee Music, Inc., courtesy of Megaforce Records
"Dream Of A New Day," performed by Richie Kotzen, produced by Mike Varney, Steve Fontano & Richie Kotzen, written by Richie Kotzen, published by Big Bag O' Tunes/Richie Kotzen Music, courtesy of Shrapnel Records/Roadrunner Records
"For The Love (Of Music)," performed by Neverland, produced by Tim Palmer, written by Patrick Sugg, Dean Ortega, Gary Lee & Scott Garrett, published by Virgin Songs, Inc./Velvet Coyote Music/Red Music/Virgin Music, Inc./Mother Flight Music/Guess What? Music, courtesy of Interscope Records
"Candy Show Theme," written, performed & produced by Julian Nott, courtesy of Julian Nott
"Tommy The Cat," written, performed & produced by Primus, published by Sturgeon, courtesy of Interscope Records
"My Honey's Lovin' Arms," written by Herman Ruby & Joseph Meyer
"God Gave Rock N' Roll To You II," performed by Kiss, produced by Bob Ezrin, written by Russ Ballard, Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons & Bob Ezrin, published by Main Spring Music, courtesy of Mercury Records
"Happy Birthday To You," written by Mildred J. Hill & Patti S. Hill, published by Summy-Birchard Music
"The Reaper Rap," written, performed & produced by Steve Vai, vocals by Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, William Sadler, Joss Ackland, Chelcie Ross, Terry Finn & Roy Brocksmith, published by Sy Vy Music/OPC Music Publishing, Inc., courtesy of Relativity Records.
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COMPOSERS
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DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Bill & Ted Go to Hell
Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure II
Bill & Ted's Weird Journey
The Second Coming of Bill & Ted
Bill and Ted Go to Mars
Release Date:
19 July 1991
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles premiere: 18 Jul 1991; Los Angeles and New York openings: 19 Jul 1991
Production Date:
7 Jan--early May 1991
Copyright Claimant:
Orion Pictures Corporation
Copyright Date:
29 July 1991
Copyright Number:
PA531973
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Lenses
Filmed with Panavision® cameras & lenses
Duration(in mins):
98
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
31166
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In the year 2691, students attend “Bill & Ted University” in San Dimas, California, where they study the ideologies of hometown heroes Bill S. Preston and Ted “Theodore” Logan, whose rock band, “Wyld Stallyns,” achieved fame in the 1990s. The campus atmosphere is unconventional, with one of the school’s instructors, a man named Rufus, using a time-traveling telephone booth to bring important historical figures to the classroom. One day, Rufus introduces Thomas Edison, Johann Sebastian Bach, and rock star “Sir” James Martin to the class. However, an explosion prevents the experts from lecturing to the students. When criminal mastermind Chuck De Nomolos emerges from the smoke and debris, he reveals his secret weapon: two sophisticated robots who look exactly like the Bill and Ted of 1991. De Nomolos plans to send the automatons back in time to kill their dimwitted doubles, altering the timeline so that he rules the future. As the time machine departs, Rufus attaches himself to its exterior. Meanwhile, in 1991, guitarists Bill and Ted, backed by their musician girl friends Joanna and Elizabeth, audition for the San Dimas music contest known as the “Battle of the Bands.” Ms. Wardroe, the booking agent, tells them that their musical act is terrible, but she agrees to put Wyld Stallyns on the bill. Later, at a birthday party for Ted’s girl friend, Elizabeth, Ted’s police captain father criticizes his son’s carefree lifestyle. Capt. Logan, now married to Bill’s young, attractive mother, Missy, suggests that both boys might be better off at military school. After the party, Bill and Ted propose marriage to their girl friends. As the couples kiss, lightning flashes across the sky, and the evil ... +


In the year 2691, students attend “Bill & Ted University” in San Dimas, California, where they study the ideologies of hometown heroes Bill S. Preston and Ted “Theodore” Logan, whose rock band, “Wyld Stallyns,” achieved fame in the 1990s. The campus atmosphere is unconventional, with one of the school’s instructors, a man named Rufus, using a time-traveling telephone booth to bring important historical figures to the classroom. One day, Rufus introduces Thomas Edison, Johann Sebastian Bach, and rock star “Sir” James Martin to the class. However, an explosion prevents the experts from lecturing to the students. When criminal mastermind Chuck De Nomolos emerges from the smoke and debris, he reveals his secret weapon: two sophisticated robots who look exactly like the Bill and Ted of 1991. De Nomolos plans to send the automatons back in time to kill their dimwitted doubles, altering the timeline so that he rules the future. As the time machine departs, Rufus attaches himself to its exterior. Meanwhile, in 1991, guitarists Bill and Ted, backed by their musician girl friends Joanna and Elizabeth, audition for the San Dimas music contest known as the “Battle of the Bands.” Ms. Wardroe, the booking agent, tells them that their musical act is terrible, but she agrees to put Wyld Stallyns on the bill. Later, at a birthday party for Ted’s girl friend, Elizabeth, Ted’s police captain father criticizes his son’s carefree lifestyle. Capt. Logan, now married to Bill’s young, attractive mother, Missy, suggests that both boys might be better off at military school. After the party, Bill and Ted propose marriage to their girl friends. As the couples kiss, lightning flashes across the sky, and the evil Bill and Ted robots land the phone booth in a convenience store parking lot. A few hours later, the doppelgangers call Bill and Ted on the phone and, using Joanna’s voice, claim that she and Elizabeth no longer want to be in the band. Bill and Ted sit in their apartment feeling rejected and watching old episodes of Star Trek, until a knock on the door alerts them to the presence of their robot doubles, who say they have come from the future to help with “the unfortunate situation.” Ted is suspicious, but evil Bill convinces them to all go for a drive together. The no-good robots take Bill and Ted to the desert and throw the unsuspecting boys over a high cliff, killing them. Their spirits awaken from the fall and meet the Grim Reaper, who intends to escort them to the afterlife. Bill and Ted ask if they could instead return to the land of the living, and Death informs them that they can challenge him to a contest: if they win, he will obey their command; if they lose, they must remain in the afterlife forever. The boys, unsure about what to do, walk fifty miles back to their apartment in San Dimas, where they discover their evil doppelgangers trying to have sex with Joanna and Elizabeth. Upset and indignant, the “dead” Bill and Ted go to the police station, where Ted’s father is holding a meeting with the other officers. Ted enters Capt. Logan’s body and tells the police force about the murderous robots. However, the policemen are skeptical, causing Ted and Bill to search for another way to alert people to the crime. Bill’s mother, Missy, happens to be holding a séance in an attempt to channel the spirits of the deceased. The boys make their presence known, but Missy, thinking they are evil spirits, recites a spell that sends them straight to hell. There, Bill and Ted capture the attention of the Devil himself, who sends them further into the underworld. The horned beast commands them to choose their eternity from a selection of unpleasant scenarios. Rather than respond to the Devil, Ted and Bill agree to face the Grim Reaper, challenging him to the board games of Battleship, Clue, and Twister. The ghoul is not skilled at the games and eventually admits defeat. Before returning to the land of the living, Bill and Ted ask to meet with someone who can help them overcome the evil robots. Death takes them to heaven, where their recitation of heavy metal song lyrics grants them a meeting with God. The deity refers Bill and Ted to a scientist named “Station,” and provides them with a map of heaven so that they can locate the genius. Meanwhile, in San Dimas, the evil Bill and Ted wreak havoc in the apartment, playing basketball with their robot heads until De Nomolos communicates from the future and tells them to stop fooling around. Back in heaven, Bill, Ted, and Death encounter two Martians who respond to the name “Station.” After a brief round of charades, they all awaken back on Earth. The group drives to a hardware store to buy supplies, and in the parking lot, the extraterrestrials shock Bill, Ted, and Death by merging and transforming into a giant creature named “Big Station.” On the way to the Battle of the Bands, the clever Martian assembles two crude robots: “good Ted” and “good Bill.” When they arrive at the auditorium, Bill and Ted take the stage and control their good doppelgangers by remote control, destroying the evil robots. The crowd cheers with approval. Just then, the time-traveling telephone booth blasts into the auditorium and De Nomolos steps out, threatening to finish the job that his robots could not. He broadcasts on worldwide television that the future will be based on his ideas, not the philosophies of moronic musicians Bill and Ted. However, Bill and Ted use their knowledge of time travel to outsmart the criminal, and De Nomolos is arrested by Capt. Logan. As the boys celebrate onstage with their girl friends, Ms. Woodroe reveals herself to be Rufus, who reminds everyone that the entire world is watching to see the outcome of the Battle of the Bands. Bill and Ted, intent on winning the contest, use the phone booth to spend sixteen months in intensive guitar training. However, in reality, mere seconds pass. They return to the stage, now married and with baby boys in tow, and introduce the band, which includes Station on bongo drums, Death on double bass, and the good robots as backup dancers. With their winning performance, Bill and Ted demonstrate that they are “most excellent” guitarists. In the years that follow, Wyld Stallyns’ music brings fame and fortune to Bill and Ted, and peace throughout the universe. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.