Saturday, 28 August 2010

Joss Whedon Keynote at the Melbourne Writers Festival

Last night my wife and I went to see Joss Whedon's keynote address for the Melbourne Writers Festival at the Melbourne Town Hall. It was done in Q&A format and towards the end of the evening some questions were taken from the audience. It was a fantastic night and the extraordinary excitement of the audience was amazing. There were even some people wearing Jayne hats.

When asked whether or not he would ever return to writing television, Whedon answered that he would never turn his back on television — which is a huge relief. Given the premature cancellations of all his recent shows (especially the amazing Firefly) I was afraid that we wouldn't be seeing any more Whedon TV, thankfully that shouldn't be the case. There certainly were, however, many comments made regarding "Satanic" and "evil" television networks, and the threats posed to the stability of society by massive corporations (which is very much a running theme in Whedon's writing, something I hadn't fully realised before last night). He also spoke about the differences in writing for film, television and comics (I am thoroughly enjoying the Buffy Season 8 and Angel comics), and even mentioned writing a novel (I don't know if he was serious, but I sure hope he was!!). I'm also getting really excited about the Avengers movie he'll be writing and directing (due for release in 2012) — he spoke a bit about how they're really letting him do whatever he wants with it, which certainly sounds promising! He said that many superhero movies now are becoming postmodern and deconstructive (The Dark Knight, Watchmen, etc), but that there is still work to do in constructing really good modern superhero movies before we begin to deconstruct them. A good point, I thought.

There is an article on on last night's MWF keynote and it goes through some of the things Whedon said, with some great quotes as well. The Australian radio station Triple J interviewed him last night as well, and there's also a great little interview on the Sydney Morning Herald website, as well as an article. Whedon will also be appearing in Sydney tomorrow night (29 September 2010) for another Q&A at the Sydney Opera House.

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