Malakai Black Discusses His Creative Freedom In AEW, Describes His Passion For Using ‘Theatrics’ In Wrestling
Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling / TNT
Since he signed with the company, Black has quickly become one of AEW’s most buzzworthy stars; in his in-ring debut, the man formerly known as Aleister Black decisively defeated Cody Rhodes, and it seems like the sky’s the limit for what he can do in AEW.
Though his run with the company is still in its early stages, Black has already showcased his creativity in ways that he wasn’t necessarily able to in WWE. In previous interviews, he has noted that the “handcuffs” are off, and while speaking with Chris Mueller of Bleacher Report,
Black noted that he has a remarkable amount of influence on his character and overall creative. He also praised the talented locker room and shared his hope that he’ll be able to help the younger stars grow.
“My creative input is almost 100 percent,” said Black. “I will send my ideas to Tony [Khan], and he will either give his thoughts on it or sign off on it. The locker room itself is absolutely great. It’s a group of people who will fight tooth and nail to get things done.
“There is a huge amount of talent in that locker room. I feel that after 21 years of being in this business, I can help that new generation and younger kids who will inherit this business and help them discover themselves. I can ask them the questions that will allow them to start the thinking process to make themselves better.”
Even before his arrival in AEW, Black showcased his artistic side in a vignette he released online. In the video, he played a patient in a mental health facility and killed a doctor. Black noted that this project allowed him to to tap back into the cinematic side of things, and he recalled how he was incorporating theatrical work into his wrestling career 10 years ago, albeit on smaller stages.
“Back in the day, I was in a tag team called The Sumerian Death Squad. We used to do cinematic promos. I didn’t want to just talk into a camera, I wanted to make a presentation. When the opportunity arose to create something new, I wanted to go back to that. I wanted to create something that added a different layer and dimension to what I have done before.”
“…The funny thing is you can go on YouTube and still find those old videos,” he said. “There was some pretty graphic stuff. I am a big fan of theatrics. Some people think I just started doing that now, but I was doing it a decade ago. I just brought it to 2021 and gave it a better production.”
Fans will have to wait and see how Black continues to utlize theatrics in his AEW run.