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May 27 2009

Now, The case for a Buffy movie without Joss. Graeme McMillan of io9 responds to the widespread disapproval towards remaking "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" without Joss Whedon. He gives several reasons why such a movie may not be a bad idea.

The main reasons he gives include Joss' involvement with "Dollhouse" and "Cabin in The Woods," and the idea of letting someone else re-imagine Buffy. McMillan comments on the current comic book series, and the fear that a Buffy reboot may wind up like the remakes of "Bionic Woman" and "Knight Rider."

I actually liked this. While McMIllan may not be as avid a Whedon/Buffy fan as some of us, I think he's right that Joss has taken Buffy where he wanted to take it. If there's going to be another Buffy movie, why should he have to make it? That's not to say I wouldn't want his input in it, but I am definitely looking forward to more Dollhouse and other creations the world is awaiting from Joss Whedon.
Yeah we could survive as a fanbase, and maybe Joss does need a break from Buffy if that is what he wants, but I don't think Buffy is ready to be imagined by someone else... Especially by Fran Rubel Kuzui and Kaz Kuzui who already screwed it up once.
I agree (or rather don't vehemently disagree) in general, but I think he's missing the rather important point that the people making this movie are the ones who screwed up the original movie in the first place. I'm all for continuations that tell a good story and respect the established canon, and haven't heard anything to indicate that's what's going on here.
Plus, if we are taking a new imagining then let's make it a NEW imagining and get someone on board who really has a vision.
If it was Tim Minear and Drew Goddard taking Buffy in a new direction, without Joss, but with his permission to do what they want? Sure.

The Kuzuis? That's like voting a braindead sewer rat in as President of the United States: It didn't work the first time, it's not gonna this time.
I missed this part of the article:

The very worst that can happen* is that we end up with a disappointing movie version that we all pretend doesn't exist in years to come, and if fandom can survive this year's Watchmen and Terminator Salvation, then I think we can deal with a Buffy that doesn't live up to our dreams.

Isn't this a pretty bad outcome, though? That's millions of dollars down the tubes, millions of people less likely to watch the TV show, and another reason for studios not to finance a *good* Buffy movie in the future. I'm not OK with this worst-case scenario. I don't think it's worth the risk, and the money-grubbing producers behind this have given us no reason to think they will produce a good movie. Maybe I'll be eating my words later, but if you're going to gamble that the movie is going to be good, it might be helpful to at least ask the advice of the guy who brought Buffy to life in the first place.
Amen, I say!

I mean the thing that bothers me the most in all this is that Hollywood thing of the creators having no legal right to their own work. But they're well-paid to not actually own it I suppose...

I'm indifferent on a Joss-less Buffy. Could be cool, could be lame, depends who's drivin. What I am all for is the notion that no creator ought to be expected to be the custodian of their creations for the rest of their days.
I agree, his "worst case scenario" is very optimistic. The way us hard-core fans see it, we can't even get a Buffy movie with years of pent up longing, throw a failed miserable wreck of a flick with the "Buffy" stamp of approval and even Joss would have a tough time scripting some dark dimension metaphor that matches our pain.
Jkalderash--I agree with the others, that isn't the worst case scenario outcome. The worst case scenario is that the movie gets made and is a shadow of the tv show (with the obligatory stealing of the most precious parts) yet despite the pure pandering and low-brow humor throughout, it becomes a HUGE hit with tweens.

In that situation, not only will the articles say how Hollywood finally made a hugely successful Buffy film and they did it without Joss Whedon. That would be mentioned in the first paragraph of every article. In that regard, it doesn't "invalidate" the tv show as the author opined. However, IMO, it certainly has the ability to tarnish it.

For decades, Christopher Reeve was Superman. I know the history of the character pretty well and I'm aware that many actors played him over the years. However, the newest incarnation of the film brought Supes back with a new actor and it was fairly well received at the box office...but the kids today didn't say "This Guy" (I cant even remember his name) is Superman. When Reeve donned the cape and tights, it was just one of those great actor/character moments. He became Superman and any before or after are held up to him as the gold standard. With Smidge and Joss, it's the same thing. Attempting to replace either is possible but the down side is forever tarnishing the franchise and the up side of course is big money. Therefore, I assume it wont be long before I'm cringing at the television trailers.

Hey MODS, has there been any discussion of "posting rules" for news on this particular topic? At some point, I personally think the topic will be taboo or unacceptable or at least for me, a really sore subject. I don't want to read about anything Buffy if it's Kazuffy.

(Hey, Kazuffy did I just coin the catchphrase for this film project???)
Hey, I did not like S6 either! :-)

Otherwise, I don't much agree with the logic here.
self delete
jfhlbuffy: If it was Tim Minear and Drew Goddard taking Buffy in a new direction, without Joss, but with his permission to do what they want? Sure.

EXACTLY. What irks me is the implication that, regardless of who owns which rights, the Kuzui's seem to have disregarded respect for the man who made a global success out of a (concept and) script they saw promise in but managed to mangle nonetheless. They screwed it up and Joss, being Joss, fixed it.

The least they could have done, if they wanted to reboot Buffy, was give Joss a heads up and first crack at the project. Barring that, they could have done him the courtesy of at least having a voice in the writer selection process.

I doubt they did any of this - consulted Joss, that is. Had they done so something tells me that Joss's response would have been a tad more verbose.

Minear or Goddard writing this? With Joss's blessing? That woukd be ******* awesome.

[ edited by SignalAddict on 2009-05-27 23:24 ]
What is so bad about creating something completely new?! The most successful franchises are not remakes of previous tv shows and movies. This cycle is so annoying and redundant to where we are resurrecting something that has only been gone for 6 years (not even if you include comics). Just make something new! Please??
The problem is that this isn't someone that we all respect saying they wants to do a Buffy remake. It's the same people who mucked up the first movie along with bad horror movie producers.

There's no evidence that a Buffy movie without Joss wouldn't be everyone's worst nightmare - a remake of the original Buffy, possibly with some Twilight copycat elements.

Whedon fans probably know more than most about what was wrong with the original Buffy movie, and the battles Joss had to go through to get his vision made. What BtVS the series ended up to be was completely against the grain of what Hollywood tends to make.

So, I don't see any reason yet to think that a Buffy remake without Joss isn't the worst idea since New Coke.

And if the remake actually is released (possibly direct to video), I worry about it ruining the possibility of an actual Buffy movie with Joss and the gang reuniting actually happening.

It took so long for BtVS the series to get past the association with the bad movie. I'd hate for it to have to shake off another bad movie.
Well-written piece, great arguments! But still? NO. A BIG WORLD OF NO.
Just visited the homepage and my eye fell on the "Discuss the new Buffy movie" and I thought about the way I would feel if I hadn't come to the site in a few days and that would have been the first thing I'd seen. (I always checks if there's some big news there, when I haven't visited the site in some time). Anyway, made me realise (again) how awesome that news would have been and how much the current news sucks.

And I agree with alexreager that, this being Whedonesque, there shouldn't be spend to much time here discussing a movie Joss (sadly) has nothing to do with).
Also, I wonder what screenwriters out there want to be the person who writes the Buffy remake? It could be the best script ever, and it's not going to make Buffy fans happy. And the Kuzui hosed Joss by mucking up his original screenplay. What will they do with this one? And who wants that on your resume? The movie fans are automatically going to loathe.

Screenwriters might as well create an original vampire story and pitch it to studios than get involved in something that's this that's clusterf'd from the start.
Just visited the homepage and my eye fell on the "Discuss the new Buffy movie" and I thought about the way I would feel if I hadn't come to the site in a few days and that would have been the first thing I'd seen. (I always checks if there's some big news there, when I haven't visited the site in some time). Anyway, made me realise (again) how awesome that news would have been and how much the current news sucks.

And I agree with alexreager that, this being Whedonesque, there shouldn't be spend to much time here discussing a movie Joss (sadly) has nothing to do with).
The problem is that this isn't someone that we all respect saying they wants to do a Buffy remake. It's the same people who mucked up the first movie along with bad horror movie producers.

YES. If Guillermo del Toro announced tomorrow he was going to take the helm of the reboot, I would do the Dance of Joy. I love him. But the Kuzuis' attempt seems more like an opportunistic grab at cashing in on an ephemeral cultural moment than something honestly creative. Getting to see the BtVS brand dragged low by a B-movie is not my idea of a fun time.
Hey MODS, has there been any discussion of "posting rules" for news on this particular topic? At some point, I personally think the topic will be taboo or unacceptable or at least for me, a really sore subject. I don't want to read about anything Buffy if it's Kazuffy.

Anyone who likes the idea of the movie will get banned.
I thought so too.

But joking aside, we'll play it by ear. If the movie does get picked up, it will get some coverage but not at the expense of genuine Joss projects. If it starts to overwhelm the front page, items will get merged/deleted/sent to the Attic/have their bucket taken away.
Have their what?
Think Angel season 4/Justine/Wesley (Or is this not a genuine question, but part of a Glory/Ben are connected-like routine?)
I disagree with the first part of the article but agree with the second. I'd rather have another season of Dollhouse/Summer's ballet/the Dr. Horrible sequel/Serenity 2/Goners/any new Joss project than a Buffy movie. I liked where the show ended; I'm happy with it as it exists. I'd rather have him move on to different things.

Also, I love the tags.
People like Season 1 Buffy over Season 6 Buffy? I'd take singing over perverted techno demons.

Anyways, The problem here isn't that Joss isn't attached to the project, it's that the Big Bad's of the Buffyverse has taken control once again. Also, people are talking about continuing the Buffy franchise, because... yeah - Why am I more inclined at this stage to call it a Slayer franchise (Doctor Who / Slayer Who?)
Is this some sort of "Japanese" version of Buffy, or something?
If Joss isn't part of the creation of this film, then I say NO!
Surprisingly, I don't disagree with this person's opinion at all. But I still really don't want to see the movie in question happen. Perhaps if it weren't being seen as a "relaunch" or "reboot" without the involvement or input of Joss or Sarah whatsoever, it would be better off.

If, for example, Fran and Kaz were interested in recasting Sarah as Buffy and even letting Joss consult on the script for final approval or whatever, I would be okay with it. Even interested in seeing where they decide to take the character. But the fact of the matter is that they intend to recast the character (likely with an actress who won't fit the bill at all), do not have any intention on consulting Joss for any input or opinion or suggestions or anything, and fully intend to start from scratch, so to speak, which to me feels like they're trying to essentially erase from our minds the Buffyverse we already know and love. Something about what they are trying to do just doesn't sit right with me, no matter how it's sliced.

Should Fran and Kaz find a way to do this right though, then I will be the first in line to see this movie. Otherwise, not a chance.
color me unconvinced and sad, vote is still an emphatic NO.
I think the problem is not so much is that the movie is possibly being rebooted, I think the problem is who is doing it. If it was someone that had worked on Buffy, Angel, or Firefly (or Dr.Horrible or Dollhouse too,) then people might be more open to it. If it was someone who worked with Joss before and really understood what it took/takes to make Buffy, Buffy, then people wouldn't be so up in arms about it. (All maybe's.) But if a Buffy movie for some reason had to come to pass, then someone writing/directing the movie would have to be creative and have the best interest of the project at heart, not someone looking to cash in vamps being cool.

Although, all this being said, I still think that at the end of the day, or if by some unforeseen horrible event, that this movie is made without Joss writing/directing, then the likelihood of the fans liking it will be slim to none.
Anything to revamp Buffy, but who holds the rights to our Buffy? Did Joss sell it or something silly?

Then again, a Quentin Taratino/Robert Rodriguez/Joss Whedon version of Buffy.... *licks lips* Starring Rose McGowan *fans self*

wait what, a Charmed crossover?
That was a nice 'counterpoint' article, but it doesn't really address what I am most concerned about, which is, in a nutshell, that if it fails, it will make it difficult for us as a fandom to justify ourselves, and for Joss to make money on any future projects in the 'TV' Buffyverse.

As an aside, though, does anybody know who was truly responsible for mucking up Joss' original film script? He has said that it WASN'T the director (which would be Fran Rubel Kuzui), but I don't know whether or not to take that at face value. Anybody have an answer on that front?

[ edited by DigificWriter on 2009-05-28 00:16 ]
No matter who is writing aren't the Kuzui's planning to direct??? It doesn't matter if they get a Whedon approved writer. Even if they have a good script it's under their creative control ie meet bad Buffy movie #2.

OOPS :D other people posted the same point ITA

[ edited by Vinity on 2009-05-28 00:16 ]
Wait? Who's funding this? I mean its all well and good to own rights to a things, but to put in in action is another thing entirely (read: Serenity).
So, is there any reason to think that the Kuzuis would necessarily have a strong creative role in the movie? I mean, they own the rights and did on the first Buffy movie, but what have they done since then. I don't think they have DIRECTED anything since then. They might be happy to just sit back and collect the check, so I don't think we can necessarily say "OMG they screwed up the first Buffy movie so they'll screw up this one!"

ETA: Kuzuis contribute the rights. Vertigo contributes the $$$. It's not clear who would direct, write, etc.. Right?

[ edited by Septimus on 2009-05-28 00:19 ]
Minear and Goddard would both be awesome, but you know who I think deserves more than anyone (besides Joss) to helm a Buffy movie? Ms. Espenson. I'd add Marti Noxon in there too, but I think that'd be a little more controversial.
Not the bucket!!

Where will I put all of this Kazuffy water? ;)

ETA: Eh, mixed up the Wesley reference with the "There's a Hole in the Bucket Eliza" song. My bad.

[ edited by korkster on 2009-05-28 00:32 ]
A Buffy movie without Joss is plagerism fair and simple. If Joss was all like "I've been there done that wanna see someone else do it" then we'd be just mumbling quietly, but this is pulling the rug out from under Joss.
If Joss wanted a break from Buffy he wouldnt be exec producing the comic series and he'd wrap it up after S8.
I wouldn't be opposed to such a movie in principle so long as the people attached are good. So far, I haven't seen any evidence of this. I'd rather it not get made unless the director is someone who has done good work in the past and who is committed to doing the source material justice (even if it doesn't hew too close to the show).
No Whedon or "Whedonite" (Minear, Goddard, Jane etc...) no Buffy. Not persuaded by this article one bit. I would rather never see another Buffy movie again then see it mishandled...AGAIN.

[ edited by DarenG on 2009-05-28 00:53 ]
Mah Bukit... ahhhhh. Simon has cheezburger.

[ edited by caring hands on 2009-05-28 00:57 ]
The author is wrong about the worst case scenario.

The worst case scenario would be if this moneygrab prevented a real Buffy movie from ever getting made.

Hypothetically, three years from now, Gellar and Joss are both bored. No big projects. They think to themselves, "You know what? Let's finally make that Buffy movie. It's time." Except they can't, because there's already this other movie called Buffy the Vampire Slayer that's due to come out that summer. Or is in production, or whatever.

I've never held my breath waiting for it, but the possibility's always been there. So if some day, in a few years, Joss and Gellar say "Eh, why not? Let's do it," and they can't, that's the worst case scenario.
I'll say again: if Joss has no problem with this, then neither do I.

Its like in Tabula Rasa, Willow feels guilty for bringing Buffy back from the dead, saying "we were so selfish."

Xander responds: "Maybe we were. I just feel weird feeling bad that my friend's not dead. . . . So I've decided to simplify the whole thing. Me like Buffy. Buffy's alive, so, me glad.

I'm with Xander on this one. We may be worried that Buffy will come back "wrong" somehow, but if this is the only additional Buffy we're gonna get, then I say, "me glad." I'm willing to take the risk, and like Joss, "I hope its cool."
There is nothing wrong with doing something new with a franchise. HOWEVER, the time is NOT RIGHT!!!! It has not even been a decade since the show was off the air, the creator is still alive, still being creative and still invested in the Buffy story!!!! I think revamping (pun intended) Buffy right now is a horrid idea. In 20, 30 years. Sure, why not? I'd love to share this with my grandkids, but not now. Also, someone mention the tween factor? I do not want Twilighty fans jumping on the Buffy bandwagon. What can I say, I'm protective of good writing.
I like the comment that says, "It's akin to the studios handing control of the next Batman movie back to Joel Schumacher."
Right, this guy is obviously not a fan. I don't intend to be insulting, but I cannot see any real fan wanting this.

We have enough Buffy right now: the comics, which is way closer to Joss' true vision. Besides, we have new Whedon things. Move forward, not look behind.

There is no way this movie will be good, unless for some reason they get a brilliant writer and director to do it (be it PJ, the Coens, or del Torro), but there would be no reason to do so, it would never happen, and you might as well just get Joss to do so. Anyone who thinks otherwise is just foolin' themselves.
I disagree on season six and the comics--both of which I adore, and both of which are best understood as a slow burn that is antithetical to the movie thing. But that's not really the point: Whedon is still working on the story, and the Kuzuis are the people who wrecked it the first time through.

The worst case scenario for me personally is that a movie comes out and I don't see it; but the worst case scenario for the franchise is that the movie flops, people negatively associate it with Whedon, Buffy's cultural legacy is tinged, Whedon's own career plummets because his most successful achievement is now associated with this crap, and people panic and cancel Dollhouse and shelve Cabin in the Woods. And of course another Buffy movie is impossible--because it's already happened and been a disaster TWICE. That's the extreme case--but people are a finicky bunch.

I admit I'm being a little paranoid here, but oh boy do I not want this movie to happen.
Really, I don't think this movie will see the light of day. It has already generated such negativity from the fans and press, I'd be surprise if a film studio would touch this one with a 10-foot pole.
Unfortunately, I'm sure there are plenty of teens and others still high off of Twilight who would check out another Vamp movie.
Whatever it turns out to be like (if it happens), I'm not worried at all about what this will do to the legacy of "Buffy." The film version of "The Wiz" was arguably awful and there have been some very dopey derivatives of "The Wizard of Oz." The original book especially is still considered a classic, and author L. Frank Baum and his series of Oz books are still heralded as wonderful. Also -- did anybody see the Rankin/Bass animated "Return of the King," which was a musical, complete with the song (I swear I am not making this up) "Where There's a Whip, There's a Way"? Somehow J.R.R. Tolkien's reputation remained unscathed and a few people still showed up for the eventual Peter Jackson version :)
The only good thing that may come out of a successful movie is more people wanting to go and watch 'our' Buffy.
I don't agree we have enough Buffy right now, I will never have my fill of this 'verse - it has deeply touched me.
You know what would be amazing, and funny at the same time? If Joss and Fox decided to beat the Kuzuis/Vertigo at their own game by finally getting a "real" Buffy movie off the ground and getting it out there before the Kuzuis have a chance to release theirs. Wishful thinking I know, and no way it'll ever happen, but it'd sure be interesting to see the two projects competing.

Seriously though, as many others have said, the worst thing about this proposed movie is not that Joss is not involved, but it's that it seems to be being made simply for money and nothing else. Get a real visionary screenwriter/director on the project and I might be interested. But to tarnish the Buffy name with a likely B-movie quality cheap cash grab? Count me, and pretty much every other Buffy fan, out.

[ edited by SteveJ2008 on 2009-05-28 10:20 ]
I still don't like it. The reason Buffy has become such a phenomenon is because of Joss! The little-blonde-girl-kicking-demon-ass was his idea and he wanted to explore it. There's no point even calling it 'Buffy' if Joss isn't involved - the name is iconic due to Mr Whedon and his fantastic mind!

What they're doing here is using the name - since it's something people have heard of so it may attract attention, and the idea - because it's an interesting concept.
They want a franchise? There already is a franchise. And a damn good one too!
I agree that Joss needs to do new things (DOLLHOUSE, Serenity sequels), but NO WAY the Buffyverse needs another vision.
The "reboot" is the big issue I have. If this was a vampire slayer movie instead of Buffy, it might not be terrible. They can pick a time period and tell the story of a completely different Slayer in the 'verse. It goes over well in books, after all.

Or they could pick a new slayer that perhaps hadn't joined up in the comic, dealing with her own "demons" at home. The possibilities go on and on without screwing with Joss's characters.

But that's what Hollywood has been severely lacking with all the remakes/reboots: creativity.
Like most people I think this is an awful idea but I don't think the worst thing about it is that Joss wouldn't be involved because, like a few people have said, there's no reason a good writer and director combo couldn't do something great with the franchise, my main problem would be the lack of original cast. I cannot seriously consider watching a 'Buffy' movie without SMG as Buffy. Really stupid idea.
BtVS revisited? Indeed?

Weren't the Kuzui duo who own the BtVS rights the two people most responsible for taking Joss's script in 1991 and mangling it into the tangled, jumbled, pile of go-see staring Kristy Swanson in 1992?

Have they now returned to wring new capital out of the franchise Joss's storytelling mastery turned into a household name? I fear they will take liberties...grave ones. Who can say what shall be stitched out of whole cloth? What horror of storytelling will lurch it's way off their Frankensteinian table?

This kind of abuse of art can only be opposed by a fan boycott. If Joss is not involved, my dollar stays in my pocket. I don't care who owns the rights to what, I own the rights to my wallet.
That is only 2 reasons why he shouldn't & none in response; Pages 1,2,3, & 4 are identical.
DaddyCatALSO those are 4 pages of comments, not 4 pages of article.
alexreager; Thanks but I still couldn't find the rest of the artyicle. But you've told me it's worth going back & trying to find when I've the time t o look.

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