You might wonder why Viadeo would cover an event such as a conversation with Joss Whedon? Well, at the Viadeo Blog we believe you ought to know the best of what happened at SXSW 2012. And for fellow geeks, this definitely comes close to the best!
If you don’t know who Joss Whedon is, let me introduce him in a few words: Buffy, Firefly, Dr. Horrible creator – Toy Story, The Cabin in the Woods writer – The upcoming movie The Avengers director. Now let’s get to his conversation with Entertainment Weekly‘s staff editor Adam B. Vary! As a teaser, here is Adam’s quick interview after the conversation:
‘Cabin in the Woods’, premiering at SXSW, came from a very organic process
Apparently Joss was very happy with the result, and based on reactions of the fans I talked to in Austin, the movie is pretty great. I haven’t seen it, but I heard that you cannot imagine the crazy twist they have in store for viewers. Joss talked about making Cabin before the Writers Strike, and shooting it exactly as they wanted to. According to Joss’s wife, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog was the first project in which he could truly be himself, and Cabin in the Woods was produced in the same way, allowing Joss and director Drew Goddard to keep the twist in the movie and create something totally unexpected.
Joss Whedon is “not ready to be postmodern about superheroes”
Compared to movies such as Watchmen or The Dark Knight, The Avengers was definitely about good old times – “kicking ass” superheroes. The audience cheered when Joss explained why he’s not ready to see fallen, dark superheroes because he still loves a good fight in a cape more than anything. Being himself a fan of the Avengers, he worked on the film knowing what fans expected and wanted. And no, we did not find out who the bad guys are! He talked about making the story his own by acknowledging the fact that those characters have nothing to do together; it was easy to play on that and try to give each of them a purpose. Joss saw this as a pattern in his work: it’s always about the team, and giving a voice and a story to every character in the room (Buffy‘s Scooby Gang anyone?)
Joss on his creative process, and what is next
What’s the difference – apart from the obvious – between a low budget movie like Joss’s upcoming remake of Much Ado About Nothing and a superproduction such as The Avengers? Not having too much money, or too much preparation, helps you stay real and connected to the story, according to him. It especially allows a director to stay creative and work around obstacles instead of just going with the flow. About his writing process, Joss explained that structure is everything: “I never write anything down until I am sure of what I want to write; it would be too much work!” On Buffy, writers never had to rebreak a story after the first draft was decided upon. For Joss, writing is all about “fierce structure, and then adding the layers”. He also likes acting out the story by himself and playing it in his head over and over again, not matter how crazy he might look.
His next projects include the anticipated remake of Shakespeare’s play ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, which was a pleasure for him to work on, (even though he was on vacation and then editing The Avengers at the same time), because he could see the results right away and he just had fun with it. About Buffy and Firefly: more Buffy comics are on the way, including a Willow mini-series, and since no one approached him about reviving the Serenity, it’s not likely to happen anytime soon. But, don’t despair, because Joss said he’s now working on a Web series – “I feel like I’m in film school again!” – called Wastelanders, with, wait for it, musical numbers!