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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
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December 31 2003

Fillion wants to play Captain dark In an interview with, Nathan Fillion said that for the upcoming movie, he wants Whedon to return the character of Captain Malcolm Reynolds back to his darker roots. (more)

Because the FOX *spit* network didn't think an audience would respond favorably to a war-torn and embittered anti-hero out for revenge, one of the many notes to Whedon was to brighten Reynolds up a bit. A lot, actually. Make him more likeable. Fillion was at first apprehensive playing such a dark character, but now that he's thought about it, "I found (it) a little unusual about him and very unlike me in the beginning and now (it's) something I'm anxious to embrace."

Do we want a darker Mal? I thought the balance between that dark cold heart being balanced by a surface of false bravado and dry ironic humor was what made Mal so special. Take that away and he's just a heartless criminal. Your thoughts?

Depends on how it's done. I think that they can maintain the humor quotient and loyalty to crew (which is what makes him such a great character, IMO) and still have him be darker - a little less pleasant and more unhinged. He actually seemed a little bit too well-adjusted and good-natured sometimes, considering his past.

But we definitely want bitter-dark and not broken-dark (no parellels with S6 Buffy, please Joss).
I too was a bit apprehensive reading that - it was the series Malcolm after all that we came to love, and I don't fancy losing him - but I'm thinking he could go darker than FoxTV would have liked without totally betraying his 'values' or whatever. Like mephistopholes, I would put a great big 'depends' on the question (the word, not a pair).
I like the way Mal turned out in the series. If the movie presented a reason for him to go dark, then it might be ok. On the other hand, the going dark thing has been done quite a bit: Angel in season 2 of Angel, Wes in Angel season 3/4, and Willow in season 6 of Buffy. Not to mention the whole Angelus thing. As long as it's not a rehash it could be interesting.

As far as his commentary, the pants splitting stories kept things more entertaining. I mean how much can you take of Joss rambling on about brilliant this, and genius that? ;)
Dark dark dark. Yes yes yes. Remember, movies can go deeper than an hour of television, especially an hour that's really 45 minutes interrupted by commercials every 15 minutes. Trust in Joss and co. They'll do it right, given half a chance.
I agree on the commentary. I thought NF's comments were very relevant and entertaining. He showed a real intelligence and sensitivity and if I could choose any member of cast to have dinner with, that's who I'd pick.

Wish more of them could have done commentaries though - we really only have a field of 4 instead of 9 to choose from on that basis. Would have loved to have heard from the others as well.
I read this and all I can think is Chronicles of Riddick. I have no idea why. Will Dark Mal sell the movie to Universal?

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