In the midst of his press tour for low-budget indie Much Ado About Nothing, Joss Whedon has been answering a few questions about his other upcoming projects with Marvel Studios.
Of his “little passion, sidebar project” Avengers 2, Whedon said that he’s approaching it “with a different mindset” than the first Avengers film.
“There are a couple of things having to do with leadership that I feel like it’s about time I’ve learned,” explained Whedon. “Everything that wasn’t writing or directing used to make me insane. And there’s a ton of ‘hurry up and wait,’ especially on a production like that. And I felt guilt, and I felt weird and very unhappy about all of those moments, and now, I sort of have this understanding of ‘No, you know what? You need sleep. You need winter. You need the things in between,’” he added. “So I just feel much more serene about the experience. Now, that doesn’t mean I won’t be a frightening mess who yells at people, but I’ll be yelling at them from love. I’ll be yelling at them about the right thing.”
“I feel like I know so well what it is that I want to accomplish, and like Much Ado, I now have a real sense of the troop I’m working with and the strictures and the opportunities. My little passion, sidebar project comes out May 1, 2015!” Whedon joked about his blockbuster sequel.
As if Much Ado and Avengers 2 weren’t keeping him busy enough, Whedon is overseeing the entirety of the current phase of Marvel on-screen properties, including the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy, directed by James Gunn.
“I’ve talked to them about the story from the beginning,” Whedon mentioned, “and the different drafts. One of the questions they asked me was ‘What do you think of James Gunn?’ and I giggled like a schoolgirl because I was like, ‘Oh, this movie is going to work.’”
“When it comes to this, for me,” Whedon added, “my only piece of advice has been: I want to hear more of James. Let’s pull out the formula. Give me more James. Make it weirder. The only way to achieve that Star Warsvibe is not to chase it – is to try to be an original universe and have all the fun and do all the stuff. And James is perfect for that because even I said, ‘A racoon?’ and James’s thing was, ‘Here’s the deal. It’s about the raccoon. This is why I love it: because of the raccoon and the tree.’ And I’m like, ‘Okay, that’s the guy you need.”
Shifting from the silver screen to the TV screen, Whedon said that for upcoming series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. there was some “struggle between spectacle and a TV budget.”
Though confirming that S.H.I.E.L.D. will bring the audience lots of great toys, Whedon said that “after the gadgets was humanity: the idea that there is an underside, a darker side, a more human context. Phil Coulson always represented the everyman, the schlemiel in the world of the fabulous or the might, gods and billionaires and legends. And that’s what the show is for, it’s for those people who, as remarkable as they may be, are not the supers, are not A-list.”
“What are the rest of us worth when there are people that are so extraordinary?” questioned Whedon. “That’s a human story. We hired actors that I am so excited to welcome into our universe, and they’re extraordinary, and they’re going to bring so much to it. That’s what I’m giving people every week; those actors, their stories, and the stories that they encounter. I know that we all share the same sensibility in terms of what makes it Marvel, what makes it that universe.”
“I never worry about what the fanboys think,” Whedon said, “because the fanboy is thinking it up.”