Saturday, February 03, 2007

Whedon off Wonder Woman

Joss Whedon, the creator of such shows as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly, has announced that he is no longer involved with the movie based off the comic book heroine Wonder Woman. After the success of Batman Begins, WB announced a new movie based on the Amazon and brought Whedon aboard to write and direct the movie. Whedon was there from the start and it seemed like it was his movie to do as he wishes.

However, after reading update after update about how he was still working on the script, nearly two years after being hired, I started to have my doubts about whether or not Whedon would ever finish the script in time to please the studio heads. The studio probably wants the WW to be a tent pole movie, and they couldn't have been happy that Whedon was seemingly dragging his feet. Also, Whedon wouldn't comment on who he wanted to play WW and the many rumors that surfaced, while in some part promoting the movie, also probably had the effect of allowing the public to think that the studio had no idea what to do.

I can imagine that Whedon, like another one of my directing heroes, Kevin Smith, is a very meticulous dirctor/writer. He is very detailed originated and would probably have a different vision for WW than the studios might want. I can see the studio wanting a big action film, but Whedon wanting a character study in the style of Batman Begins. Remember, Superman Returns also was more of a character study, and it did not do so well. So the studio might have been wary about going down that road again.

All this is speculation, of course. The Whedon and WB split was not acrimonous and Whedon will land on his feet. He already has an original horror movie lined up to work on. The WW movie will go on, maybe languishing in development hell for a while (though the studio did buy another script the day before Whedon announced his leaving. Interesting?). The little interested I had in a WW movie though as already decreased with this announcement as I am a big fan of Whedon. But it just may have been a case of someone who is knowledgeable about comics (Whedon is currently writing an X-Men comic) knowing too much for his own good. WB has a long way to go to make Wonder Woman work.


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