WB And FOX Hate Joss Whedon, Disney Not So Much


Photo via Marvel

I like Joss Whedon. He makes good stuff. Sure, he kills the things we love, but we love the things he kills. And in a couple months, we'll be getting his vision of The Avengers on the big screen, which is amazingly only the second feature film he's directed, after Serenity. Later next month, his often delayed Cabin in the Woods, which he co-wrote and produced, will finally see the light of day, and Whedon's been out on the PR trail, talking about his hopes and dreams, and his past failures. His terrible, terrible failures.

“My heart was on the table. I was so into it. And I could tell the executive I was talking to was just completely thinking about their schedule and their window and it was like I was talking to a wall. It was a different language. And I drove away from the meeting and I actually said to myself like, how much more indication do I need that the machine doesn’t care? I got back to work and they cancelled Firefly. And I was like ‘it was rhetorical! I wasn’t asking for more!’”

That was Joss Whedon's description of what I can only guess was one of his worst days ever. Because the thing he was pitching to the disinterested exec? A Batman movie. This would have been 2003, about the time that Christopher Nolan got the OK to make Batman Begins. Would I trade The Dark Knight for Joss' Batman? Hell no, but I'd be interested in what such a thing would look like. I have a feeling that Joss might be the only man capable of adapting Harley Quinn to the screen successfully.

It's interesting to pause here, though, and reflect on Joss' career. Buffy the Vampire Slayer on the WB, until it was cancelled, and moved over to UPN (which was owned by Paramount). Angel remained on the WB where it was unceremoniously cancelled by the network during the fifth season. A Batman pitch would have been presented to the WB (different division, but hey, follow me on this). Joss famously came this close to making a Wonder Woman movie in 2005/2006 before the production company backed away from the project. That company? The WB.

Now Joss finally has his chance to get into the world of superheroes, with what is easily Marvel's biggest risk to date, and I think Joss is one of the few directors who can pull it off. All of his series were ensemble pieces, so he is used to moving multiple characters within the same story. Firefly had ten main characters (eleven if you count River's feet). Avengers has about that many, and that is including Loki. Joss has proven that he is comfortable with the big action pieces and special effects, and is probably the best resume he could have had for getting this project. And you know what, Marvel and Disney must have thought so too.

"But it was like comics, because they didn’t interfere. I told them ‘this is the kind of movie I want to make’, and they said ‘all right, make that movie’. And that is what happened. And they were as unmeddlesome as any studio I’ve ever worked with, even though they had the very strict touchstones that had to happen. So it was a weirdly free experience."


So, perhaps this is a lesson to Joss in the future. Stay away from FOX and the WB, stick with the people who actually let you make your films. So far, that has been Disney and Universal (who gave Serenity a chance, gods love 'em).

And speaking of Disney, they've unleashed a new series of posters for The Avengers, including one, seen above, featuring Maria Hill. Her first actual appearance in a piece of publicity! Not that I'm a huge fan of Hill. I would have preferred they went with Ultimate Carol Danvers, thus setting Ms. Marvel up for a sequel, but I'll trust Joss for now.

I don't actually like these posters, as they are obviously head shots on CG bodies, and not great ones at that, and Maria again looks like she has a serious bowel obstruction, but it's nice to see the entire team (save Coulson. We need one of just him, sitting quietly, cause you know that means he's just resting) represented. See rest of the posters here.

The Avengers opens May 4th. Cabin in the Woods opens April 13th. Joss Whedon's Batman remains a dream. The return of Firefly... we can only hope.



Via Den of Geek, and again. Also, ComicsAlliance.

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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.

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