Shane McMahon sat down with Corey Graves on this week's After The Bell and discussed what he's been up to both in front of the camera and behind the scenes in WWE recently. When the subject of his backstage roles were brought up, "Shane-o-Mac" discussed his role in producing the Firefly Fun House Match between John Cena and Bray Wyatt from WrestleMania 36. The bout wound up being one of WWE's first cinematic matches, showing Wyatt force Cena to relive his greatest career failures before The Fiend caused him to disappear.
Cena has spoken highly of the finished product in the past, and McMahon revealed the 16-time world champion played a big role in getting certain ideas onscreen.
"We knew it was going to be different, that's the one thing," Cena said. "You know, whether you loved it or hated it, [we] wanted to make it a mind trip. So it set up the potential of anytime The Fiend wants to have a match like this, it could be this trippy, completely different, go anywhere down a wormhole... what have you. So that was the intent of it, kudos to John Cena for thinking outside the box. An immense amount of that was really, really pushed by him. John wanted Bray to do very well with it, and had it be a showcase for him."
Cena talked about the match in a recent interview with Sports Illustrated. As of this writing, he has not returned to the television product since that loss.
"I've had many experiences and many stories in WWE over my tenure there, and a lot of it has been embracing conflict and embracing the tale of good versus evil," Cena said. "This isn't the first time I've done something like this. For the viewing audience, it was the first time they'd seen a cinematic depiction of this, but this isn't the first time that we've seen a conflicted John Cena character. As with all the opportunities I get in WWE, I never try to be complacent and I always like to push the envelope. This was an instance where we could do just that, and I think we put forth a product that certainly got people's attention and got people talking."
"It left a lot of questions," he later added. "It wasn't just single-serving, it is something you can go back and watch and enjoy. Those are some of the best efforts."