What’s next for Joss Whedon?
Joss Whedon at Entertainment Weekly's Comic-Con party on Saturday.
July 17th, 2012
04:00 PM ET

What’s next for Joss Whedon?

After directing the most successful movie of the year – not to mention the third most successful movie of all time – where does one go next?

In Joss Whedon's case, it's not Walt Disney World, but San Diego Comic-Con, where he was ubiquitous this year. Whedon hit up the parties (social media lit up with tales about his dancing prowess) and spoke on several panels, even getting mentioned In a panel for the web series "Husbands," on which he will guest star.

Whedon was a perennial presence at the mega-convention, hyping TV’s "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Firefly," among others, for many years prior to his box office success.

Whedon wasn't at the convention to tout the success of "The Avengers," though. His first panel celebrated the 10th anniversary of "Firefly," – in conjunction with an upcoming special on the Science Channel – and his second was to discuss the continuing adventures of "Buffy" in comic book form.

Lately, though, Whedon has been pondering his post-"Avengers" plans.

“I’ve just been trying to be with my family and trying to figure out who I am and what to do next," he told CNN Geek Out at Comic-Con. "It’s kind of an exciting time right now but it’s an exciting time of me waiting to make sure I don’t get so excited that I do the wrong thing."

He’s putting the finishing touches (and scoring the music for) an adaptation of Shakespeare’s "Much Ado About Nothing."

Next up: "Wastelanders," a web series with Warren Ellis, and "Dr. Horrible 2," a sequel to the Emmy award-winning web mini-series that starred Neil Patrick Harris. The prospect of a follow-up drew a roar of approval from the “Buffy” audience. Whedon hopes to begin production in the spring, while the original will appear on the CW soon.

Before he returns to that universe, Whedon continues to oversee the ninth season of the "Buffy" comic (it has picked up where the series left off). The comic has seen its share of shocking moments, including surprise deaths and surprise villains, as well as a lesbian relationship for Buffy. More recently, the character decided to have an abortion, a development which may or may not have passed muster with TV networks.

“They didn’t want me to have a lesbian kiss but they backed down on that," he said. "The only time the network ever actually said, ‘Now you need to stop,’ was when we made fun of fast food. When Buffy worked in a fast food place, that made them uncomfortable. If I had said the character is going to decide to have an abortion. In this day and age, some networks would be incredibly skittish because the people who oppose a woman’s right to choose are very vocal and kind of creepy. On the other hand, they might not blink because it is reality in this country that over a third of women are going to make that decision. It’s hard to say, it depends on who’s at the top. In comic books, we’re all at the top, and if it feels right, it belongs there and you don’t have to go through a phalanx of suits. I don’t know if [Dark Horse Comics editor] Scott Allie owns a suit."

It remains unknown, though, whether we will see the character again outside of comics.

"Obviously, we’re going to move into opera and then there’s going to be a flash mob," Whedon joked.

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Filed under: Comic Longbox • Comic-Con 2012 • Fandom
soundoff (43 Responses)
  1. Sandra

    Oh god, that was way to enjoyable. I am gonna go sleep now, and holplufey wake up less of a geek tomorrow. Err. Yeah. Nice link, very enjoyable, good night :)

    October 12, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
  2. Adam Jensen

    I would like to see another show set in the FIREFLY universe. Honestly it doesn't have to be a rehash, and I'm not so in love with the characters that I would pout if every one of them didn't show up again regularly, but FIREFLY had a rich universe that I believe could have been expanded and used more, and I would like to see another show do that. Hopefully it will last longer this time, anyone agree?

    July 31, 2012 at 8:13 pm |
  3. georgethree33

    MORE FIREFLY damn it! It's time – finish the story. Tell the end of Mal & Inara's story, how they finally become the couple we want them to be. Tell Shepherd's backstory – yes I know some of it is in the comics – i want it on screen. Tell us where they go after Serenity. It's not over – we need more. Tell the story Joss!

    July 27, 2012 at 8:15 am |
  4. FriskyDingo

    Dr. Horrible 2! I can't wait!

    July 19, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  5. richww2

    Maybe Whedon can use some of his newly formed clout as a director/producer and bring back Firefly or at least make a sequel to Serenity.

    July 19, 2012 at 10:07 am |
    • TheBBitz

      But it wouldn't be the same because they killed Wash :(

      July 19, 2012 at 10:56 am |
      • Logic

        And Inara turned into a flesh eating lizard...

        July 19, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  6. TV-Y7

    What's next for Joss Whedon? Head wax. Lots and lots of forehead wax.

    July 19, 2012 at 8:22 am |
  7. WHAT?

    Avengers is the most successful film of the year? To whom? Certainly not to me. I think for myself and live in reality.

    July 18, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Joe Helfrich

      You may not have liked it, or been interested in it, but the box office numbers can't be argued with. It has sold more tickets than any other film this year,and made more money, by a large margin. That is certainly a reality based metric to call the film the "most successful" of the year.

      July 18, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • Anonymous Coward

      I believe they're counting box office dollars, not any individual's personal opinion.

      July 19, 2012 at 1:49 am |
  8. lolwut

    You know, I generally like Joss Whedon's stuff, but the frothing nerdgasms of praise for him tend to go a bit overboard. He's a clever writer, but he can be a bit too self-consciously "cutesy" at times, for lack of a better word, to the point that it's actually immersion-breaking.

    Also, I really hope he doesn't turn into Stephen King and decide that he's big enough now that he no longer has to restrain himself from overtly preaching his political views in his work, as lesser-known authors would need to do. The speed at which a piece of sci-fi fades into irrelevance tends to be proportional to the strength of its connection to parochial, current-event-type issues. Well, we'll see.

    July 18, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Joe in Pittsburgh

      "The speed at which a piece of sci-fi fades into irrelevance tends to be proportional to the strength of its connection to parochial, current-event-type issues."

      There was this little Sci-Fi show from the 60's that would beg to disagree with you. What was that called? Star... something?

      July 18, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
  9. Cordy

    doesn't matter what he does next, he's a genius, and it will be fantastic!

    July 18, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  10. me

    Not all of us who are pro-life are very vocal about it, and I'm far from creepy. I happen to have a uterus, hey, Joss, how's yours doing?!

    July 18, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • clubschadenfreude

      creepy? Oh yes, those women who say that their choices are appropriate for all women, and who try their best to legislate their own religiious beliefs into law. So, "me" how many kids have you adopted or fostered? How many politicians have you written to in support of food for the poor, medical aid for the poor, housing for these children you want everyone to be forced to have, etc?

      Women have abortions and they are legal. They are the woman's choice, not yours. And if Buffy decided to have an abortion, well, don't you think a pregnancy would be in danger if she kept killing vamps? Or are you all about strapping women down to tables so you can "protect" that fetus? Only, of course, to shirk any responsiblity for it when you claim that your money is going to "welfare moms" that you created?

      July 18, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
      • not me

        jeez, jump down people's throats much? seems to me in the pro-choice vs pro-life debate those on the pro-choice side seem to get very annoyed at those who "choose" to be pro-life. can't there ever be a discussion that does not turn political? you're arguing over whether or not a fictional character who, in the storyline we're talking about, is a robot and not even pregnant, is considering an abortion.
        these are joss's babies we're talking about, he doesn't need a uterus to write a story that touches upon the abortion issue. joss does a pretty good job of keeping preachy political views out of his works... i'm just grateful he shares his genius with the rest of the world...

        July 18, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
      • me

        Thanks, not me. I said I'm not exactly the most vocal on my stance. I just wouldn't personally have an abortion. I've been a responsible adult that waited till I was married to have a baby. I'm super fertile but if I wasn't then sure, I'd adopt. I don't like the idea of supporting Welfare moms any more then you, nor would I protest at a clinic.
        I loved the Buffy movie, I actually respect Joss Wheden a lot. I just didn't like the generalization.

        July 18, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
    • narbonne1944

      "I happen to have a uterus, hey, Joss, how's yours doing?!" Creepy and irrelevant statement.

      July 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  11. Rick

    If they put Dr. Horrible on Fox, all the songs will be sung out of order.

    July 18, 2012 at 11:28 am |
    • Natalie

      Or they'll cancel it after Act 1 ;-)

      July 18, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • Kirsten

      LOL! Well said.

      July 18, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
  12. ekeg

    I love how Dr. Horrible starred Neil Patrick Harris, but no mention of Nathan Fillion or Felicia Day. Where is the love? It's not like they are no-names, especially Nathan, and they are both more prevalent in Joss Whedon's work than NPH is. I love NPH as much as the next person...but come on!

    Looking forward to see where Joss heads next, I'm glad he's finally getting the kudos he deserves, the ones us Firefly and Buffy fans know he's deserved for a long time.

    July 18, 2012 at 1:14 am |
  13. xfiler93

    well, since he just ranted against capitialism...which has made him very RICH....maybe he make a movie like Micheal Moore and diss the country that made him famous and rich. the hypocrite.

    July 17, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
    • god

      I think you must have read this interview in another reality. Or more likely, you just imagined that you read what Joss Whedon had to say. Either way, your comment makes no sense in the here and now.

      Or perhaps I just don't know what "capitialism" means.

      July 18, 2012 at 1:05 am |
      • xfiler93

        not talking about this interview dufus. not another REALITY, just a DIFFERENT interview. understand?

        July 18, 2012 at 1:38 am |
      • JeramieH

        > not talking about this interview dufus

        God, that's what you get for not reading xfiler's mind and whatever other drivel he reads.

        July 18, 2012 at 10:38 am |
      • Rick

        Couldn't read his mind because his head was wrapped in tin foil.

        Sorry.

        July 18, 2012 at 11:29 am |
    • xfiler93

      He gave another interview where he bashed captialism. apparenty OTHER is a hard concept for Jermiah and Rick. pathetic.

      July 18, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  14. BDT

    Give me closure on Firefly! I wanna know more about Shepard Book's past! I know you want to do it but don't have the backing. Start a Kickstarter! I want the Big Damn Trilogy to come to fruition!

    July 17, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • Browncoat4life

      Come now, haven't you read the Firefly graphic novels yet? Sheppard Book's past is clearly noted in the novel "The Sheppard's Tale"

      July 17, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
    • dman6015

      I believe the movie Serenity was your closure. If you didn't find it there, you're S.O.L.

      July 18, 2012 at 11:01 am |
      • dman6015

        P.S. – Stupid Fox.

        July 18, 2012 at 11:02 am |
      • Erin

        There's a lot of unfinished business despite "Serenity," and there's nothing in the movie that particularly explains Book's history, especially with Mal's quip about Book having to tell him how he learned so much and Book's response. ("No, I don't.") Browncoat4life is right on – those who felt they needed to know more about Book and how he knew so damn much about the Alliance should check out The Shepherd's Tale. Explains quite a bit!

        July 18, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  15. xof1013

    It was also announced during Comic Con that Joss Whedon will be starring in the second season of "Husbands" – an online marriage equality comedy co-created by Jane Espenson and Brad Bell (aka Cheeks). Whedon will be acting in his largest role to date, having previously appeared in a cameo on Veronica Mars. Whedon will play the agent to out professional baseball player "Brady Kelly" (Sean Hemeon), who is married to out actor Cheeks on the show. The series will be premiering Season Two on August 15th. You can see season one at husbandstheseries.com.

    July 17, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
    • LaynieDane

      Beyond thrilled to see Joss involved with Husbands – I really like and respect the guy for the boundaries he's pushed with entertainment. I tend to appreciate his humor and point of view, so hearing that he'd be appearing in http://husbandstheseries.com was pretty mind-blowing. Two of my fandoms have collided in a wonderful way – not to mention my absolute hero worship of Jane Espenson, Husbands' co-creator. I'll check out anything Jane is involved with on blind faith – love her intelligence and wit!

      July 17, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
    • kake79

      Don't forget his fantastic turn as Numfar in Angel! My favorite acting role of his to date.

      July 18, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
  16. BD

    Joss, you've had some great one and some terribly ones but your integrity on honesty are easily as appreciated by your fans as much as your art is.

    That said, take some time off; your looking a lot older these days than you did pre-Avengers.

    And because no post about Joss would be complete without it: RIP Firefly.

    July 17, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
    • Natty

      :( I hadn't even noticed how much older he looked until you said that and I went back up to have another look.

      And he's not slowing down. Warren Ellis tweeted this morning that they've started work on Wastelanders. On the one hand, I'm just happy that he's not happy unless he's creating something. On the other hand, I don't want him to burn out.

      July 18, 2012 at 11:13 am |