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October 24 2011

Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing. Nathan Fillion just tweeted this link!

What is this, exactly??
I assume it's a film by Joss Whedon, called Much Ado About Nothing, based on a play.
I'm not sure this is a real project. A quick google search turns up no info.
Ah. Thank you very much.
Fran Kranz just tweeted the website too... Cahoots I tells you
Steve, why would the various people involved in making it be tweeting it if it weren't real? (FYI, there was no information about Dr. Horrible prior to that being unleashed either.)
Since multiple people associated with it all tweeted it within 10 minutes of each other, I'm pretty sure it's real. :)
Would Nathan Fillion lie to us?
Very exciting!!!
Hey! I posted this first! This is big news! Aly retweeted for a girl named Elizabeth.
Nathan Fillion was tweeting something about Shakespeare recently, so I doubt it's a hoax.
At the Hollywood Guild/Dr. Horrible event last night, Shawna Trpcic was in attendance and told us there was an announcement tonight at 7. I *believe* she said she's doing wardrobe for it (since that's what she does), but wouldn't give any other details except that they were finished shooting.

She mentioned it would 'perhaps' include some of the evening's guests (Nathan and Alan were there; side note: squee).

And here it is! I can't wait to learn more - a lot of my favorite people are in that list. :)
Huh.... Uh, okay then.

I'm still waiting for Joss Whedon's short ballet film with Summer Glau. Serving Girl, or some such?
Serving Girl, yeah. Meanwhile, I've decided this project is actually Mucha Dot He Movie.
See I knew Joss wasn't really filming The Avengers.
Well obviously no one involved would be lying, I didn't mean to imply that. It just seemed a bit odd that they could already be finished filming an entire project without any info having leaked. But then again, that Joss is one sneaky dude.

Whatever it turns out to be, count me intrigued and excited!
Wow, very cool, very excited and right before bed time. I'm awake now.
Reed Diamond also just tweeted the link :)
Alright I want to know what this is. My nose smells that this dish needs some purple before it is finished baking.
Domain registered 21-Oct-2011 for one year. By some private registration firm.
That's about the perfect one for him to pull off, too. Good enough for Branagh, good enough for Whedon. I'm trying to imagine who is playing whom. Amy and Alexis must be Beatrice and Benedick. I'd love to see Nathan play Don John.
This is real. And already shot. And my inner (and outer) child is still giddy.
I'm sold! Is this Joss' return to the net, or is this a full-hog in theaters movie?
I'm hardly an expert on Shakespeare...but, um, is there actually snorkeling in his play? Because I'm thinkning no. And I'm insanely curious how snorkeling happens in this version.

Also: giddy reading the names in the cast list.
I can't breathe!!!!!! I am way too excited!
I am assuming from the billing that it's Amy Acker as Beatrice and Alexis Denisof as Benedick. Whee! Also wondering if putting Tom Lenk and Fran Kranz in the same frame will be like putting matter and antimatter together, only in iambic pentameter.
According to this guy, who was apparently an extra, Joss shot it while on his two-weeks "vacation".

And I would imagine it's some kind of web project. Full-hog theaters movies don't stay this well hidden for so long.
Dunno about snorkeling, but I think there is snoring, and someone waking the snorer up, which is snore-killing ...
Besides all of the usually Whedonverse players I'd expect (and am so excited to see listed), I thrilled that BriTANick is involved in this as they are easily my favorite comedy team on YouTube right now!
OH MY GOD!!!!

What is this!! I am so excited and I basically have no idea what is going on!!!!
Much Ado is my favorite Shakespeare play. I cannot wait to see what this is about.
It just seemed a bit oh that they could already be finished filming an entire project without any info having leaked.

This may be nothing more than a rough film of a bunch of folks playing around at Joss' house on the weekend. I imagine that if you've been working on such an intense project as The Avengers, it might be nice to spend a weekend kicking back and playing a little with your friends.

And then throwing the footage up on the internet for fun.
Shut up and take my money!
Kai must be really forgiving as I think joss spent his avengers fee on some dude from the past.

Not that I'm complaining. I saw Alexis do a play here in Liverpool in 2005. He was so very good. And, you know, the woman they call AMY ACKER. Fran! Nathan! I'll stop before my iPhone ! key breaks.
WAIT. YOU MEAN IT'S POSSIBLE FOR AMY AND ALEXIS' LIPS TO TOUCH WITHOUT DEATH ENSUING?

...wait, I actually don't remember Much Ado that well. IT'S A COMEDY, RIGHT?
While this would be superduperawesomecool - and I'd see it in an instant - I'll believe it when I see it. When I first looked at the website, I thought it was just a fun little website for some wishful thinking.

And The One True b!X, 'Mucha Dot He Movie' sounds like a fun Bollywood title. Now THAT would be something special.
I remember reading ages ago that Joss would often get his show casts up at his house on weekends to do impromptu Shakespeare readings for the fun of it.

Might have sprung out of one of those.
MAAN is definitely one of the comedies.
Oh dear God, please let this not be a hoax! It's just too amazing.
Wow, and BriTANick is there too! Awesome! I'm so happy that Joss introduced me to them. They're hilarious.

I think it's really funny how I can be so excited for something I didn't know about 20 minutes ago and have little to no idea what it is.

ETA: A google search for "Bellwether Pictures" produced nothing of note.

[ edited by Giles_314 on 2011-10-24 04:30 ]
Super shiny! *bounce bounce*
Ms. Tancharoen seemingly just confirmed it!!!
Clark Gregg. I love how an Avengers cast member got roped into the Whedon family that deeply and that fast.
I'm pretty sure Bellwether Pictures exists just to have produced this, much like Timescience Bloodclub existed to produce Dr. Horrible.
It's a film. And it ain't no hoax.

I remember somebody here saying "I'd love to be a fly on the wall at the Shakespeare readings". Well, you can. With budget.
Very exciting!
I don't know a thing about "Much Ado About Nothing" (guess it's time to find it and read it), but it's Joss + Shakespeare + and that awesome cast! It's instant WIN!
Wow, Joss is seriously on a ROLL. We're going to be getting this, Avengers, AND Wastelanders? *dies from the amazing*
And CABIN, robertmckay.
Oh.My.God. I cannot believe this, how is it even possible? Joss made a movie and he cast all of his friends in it (LOL)!
BTW who is the snorkeling dude w/the martini (I don't recognize him).

This is more exciting than the Avengers (to me).
embers, isn't that Fran?
I'm pretty sure it's Fran. Not that I've seen him snorkel before.
I thought so too at first, but the mask is distorting too much of the face to really tell. Plus, I was under the impression that Mr. Kranz is actually a little buffer than you might guess at first (at least, compared to the guy in the picture.)

'Course, I could be completely wrong.
If it helps, click the image and then look at it full size. It sure looks like a Fran hand to me.
I've been living MAAN all summer because David Tennant and Catherine Tate just played Bennedick and Beatrice in a great production in London (and I went to see it). Now, I get to see a Joss Whedon produced version with Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof in the the roles? I'm in heaven!!!
The Cast:
Ms. Emma Bates confirms that she will play Ursula and that shooting concluded today.
Mr. Nathan Fillion will appear as Dogberry, an inside source reveals.
(Additional casting deets from Pink Is the New Blog via Gossi:)
Beatrice: Ms. Amy Acker
Benedick: Mr. Alexis Denisof
Don Pedro: Mr. Reed Diamond
Leonardo: Mr. Clark Gregg
Claudio: Mr. Fran Kranz
Hero: Ms. Jillian Morgese
Leonato's Aide: Mr. Joshua Zar

The Crew:
Ms. Shwna Trpcic confirms that she is Costume Designer.
Ms. Jenna Tucker tweets that she did makeup.

[ edited by Pointy on 2011-10-24 16:14 ]
I really hope that Fran and Tom play Dogberry and
Verges! That would be beyond hilarious!
The One True b!X, it's funny you mention the hand, because that was the only part of the photo that really gave me pause. I mean, as much as I can credit a hand for giving pause. =)
Mo confirms on her Facebook page that it's Fran, FYI.
Then I tip my hat to you sir, for your exceptional hand-spotting skills.
Wow. It's got someone from every one of his shows. Also, Riki Lindhome from Garfunkel and Oates. I love when people I like from very different things come together.
I don't even know how to wrap my head around this level of awesome. Squee!
Sean Maher tweets also, and says they did wrap today.
I can't contain my excitement! I mean - what! - where did this come from?! - Joss, you rock my world! I'm so giddy about the cast! Basically I'm a walking exclamation mark at the moment.
To the (few) peeps who are still skeptical. Remember that NPH himself broke the news about Dr. Horrible, and almost no one here believed it. I (a nobody to be sure) confirmed it (not saying at the time how I knew. I had something to do with the camera equip) And still so very few believed until Joss confirmed it here (on the first day of shooting no less.)

So I guess what I'm saying is, with so many name people saying it's for real, why would it be a hoax? :P

For the record, I cannot personally confirm this one (nor would I expect anyone to believe me), but I do trust Shawna and, well, everyone else. :)
For the curious, here is the thread from 2008 about Dr. Horrible being outed at production's start.
Still my beating theatre geek heart, I'm all a squee!
I saw Alexis do a play here in Liverpool in 2005. He was so very good.

It was 2006 (on the first anniversary of the Serenity London premiere, in fact!), but yes he was! :D And then he talked to us about hoover box coffee tables and ran off to phone Aly. Ah memories.

So excited to see this!
bellwether: One that serves as a leader or as a leading indicator of future trends. I think that's fairly important.
omg

what is this

I can't even believe this is happening. This is the best thing that could've ended today.
I wish Joss had just decided to make...this sooner :)

Not gonna happen yet b!X but I doubt it is far off from happening ;) (I give it a couple hours)

[ edited by ben_b55 on 2011-10-24 06:33 ]
"What do you do to relax when making a movie for hundreds of millions of dollars?"

"I film Shakespeare."

Disclaimer: Not an actual interview. Entirely made up. Do not quote.
That's the part that really kills me, b!x. If anyone ever asks me how to have Joss Whedon's creative success, I'll tell them the very simple answer: have the most absurd work ethic I've ever seen.

I mean, sheesh! Take a nap, dude! (please don't do this, I want more Shakespeare movies)
Very exciting.
I have been wishing for something like this for a long time. Glad it's finally happening. I wonder if they'll distribute it using some permutation of the Dr. Horrible model.
If anyone's curious about early blog/press coverage: io9, Advocate, Cinema Blend.
Here's hoping :)
Woke up to these news on my Swedish timeline. What a great way to start the day!
This would make a great release for Equality Now screenings, joss.
Oh, my god. This is so exciting.
Tor, Hollywood Reporter ("The obvious question, of course, is whether it is in fact some sort of adaptation of the William Shakespeare play.").
@Sunfire "Would Nathan lie to us" No, but he would pull a harmless prank on us given half the chance I'm sure :P

I am so excited about this. It's my favourite Shakespeare play, and I eagerly await the opportunity to throw money in Joss' direction to watch/own it.

If this is going to be an internet thing, I think that's a good thing. He pulled it off once with DrH and won awards and stuff, but I'm sure much of hollywood dismissed it as "he got lucky". If he pulls this off again online, and BEFORE Avengers hits our screens, they will have to start biting their tongues about internet ventures not being successful.
Gossi, I had the same thought. Dr Horrible injected some new life into the screenings, especially with Fox's crackdown on OMWF.

So we can expect the ballet to be announced next week right? (seriously I would pay much much mulah to watch that, especially with the poor offerings our national ballet company keeps serving up)
Seeing The Hollywood Reporter and co scrabbling around trying to pull together information from twitter and fan sites has made my week. Maybe even my year. Thanks, joss.
Looking like a number of us have been having that same thought (re: EN) tonight. Especially in light of Joss' big "let's do stuff next year" thing in this year's CSTS intro video.
Gah! Excitement City; Population: Me
Surprised people are wondering what the distribution is. Joss was interviewed during Avengers about wanting to do a web project after Avengers. Wastelanders was mentioned, but not stated as being that particular project. I would guess MAAN is that particular project. :)

And we knew about it as recently as a few days ago.

[ edited by bobw1o on 2011-10-24 07:33 ]
Nathan just tweeted: "Oh, it's real. Very. Very. Real. muchadothemovie.com"
Before anyone jumps to (any more) conclusions about Amy and Alexis playing Beatrice and Benedick, I would like to point out that the cast's names are in alphabetical order. Of course, that doesn't mean they're *not* playing those parts, either...!
bobw10, wasn't Wastelanders always mentioned as a web distributed project? I never for a second thought it would be anything else. And if MAAN is released on the Internets then it could still take many forms and have many different partners. Joss calls it "punk rock" but I call it the Wild West. No rules.
The Wrap, which reports it as an exclusive, despite that we've all been discussing it for hours now.
Methinks this will redefine 'epic'!
I might be dreaming a bit here but... I just thought that maybe, just MAYBE this will end up on a DVD and as extras we would have videos of those famous Shakespeare readings, like "so, this is what inspired us to do this movie...".

The thing isn't even out yet and I'm already dreaming with the DVD extras, hehe.
This may be nothing more than a rough film of a bunch of folks playing around at Joss' house on the weekend. I imagine that if you've been working on such an intense project as The Avengers, it might be nice to spend a weekend kicking back and playing a little with your friends.

And then throwing the footage up on the internet for fun.


I completely agree. I think the picture of Fran Kranz snorkeling with a drink already gives it away that this will not be a serious project. It looks like Joss was just messing around with these awesome people and thought the internet would like to see it. Plus, filmed in two weeks while he's working on The Avengers? I know he's Joss, but I don't think he could make a full-length, serious adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing in that short span of time, even if he was only working on one project.
Wasn't Dr. Horrible filmed in 2 weeks also?
I call that a "serious project"...
Dr. Horrible was only six days. On that level, Much Ado could be filmed in two weeks.
It's a serious project. They worked their asses off, 14 hour days and all that.

[ edited by gossi on 2011-10-24 07:56 ]
Joss Whedon and his strolling players. I hope there's a behind-the-scenes documentary about the project.
I don't think I've ever been so excited by a cast list.
I left the intertubes today to Do A Thing of The Potluck Variety, and I just returned to find Much Ado About a Joss Thing - and as much information as can possibly be scoped in a few hours assembled herein by my fellow citizens of Whedonia. From whom I expect no less, of course, but still I thank you all for the hot dope info.

What a cast. What a cool project. What a well-kept surprise!

Simon, your strolling players thing reminded me of this Joss-improv from an outtake of his much-loved turn on Veronica Mars.

"Renting cars is a basic human need, like eating or sleeping or trying on shoes…. We’re like the minstrels of old. I think about these things, okay? We’re like the minstrels of old, going from town to town, maybe singing, maybe entertaining people. People need that, the way they need to rent cars…. See, I’m thinking about these things in my off hours. What are you thinking about? You’re not even here when you’re here, okay? I’m here, I’m doubly here, there’s two of me. I’m in the front, I’m in the back. I’m working here, I’m helping them. Why? Because there’s none of you. Maybe you should just think, “What can I do better? What could be better about me, about Stacey? Stacey who works at Lariat, who works for Lariat, okay, who is a Lariat girl."

Much Excited About This Project. I love the Immortal Bard. And that Shakespeare guy is good, too.


ETF: typo, natch.

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2011-10-24 08:54 ]
I hope Sean Maher is Claudio. That would be so adorable!

Love Much Ado, really excited for this!

Edit: Or maybe Spencer will, with Emma Bates as Hero?

[ edited by Vortigun on 2011-10-24 09:14 ]
What a great way to start a day! I am so excited. The cast is amazing. Seeing Amy and Alexis together again; Reed, Nathan, Fran... So good!

I hope this will be an internet project (and eventually a BD/DVD release) so we won't have to wait a life time to see it in movie theaters.
Firstly I'd like to draw people's attention to this comment I made less than two months ago.

And then I'd like to say this:

When is Joss going to make series 2-7 of Firefly?


I like EW's headline: "Joss Whedon announces secret film of 'Much Ado About Nothing,' ability to warp time and space at will".

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2011-10-24 09:49 ]
On a more churlish note:

Wot, no ASH/Williams/Day?

Saving them for Lear no doubt!

Y'know the BBC is making 4 Shakespeares for broadcast next year, with Sam Mendes. Does anyone have their number?
Ovaries go boom.
"Wesley" and "Fred" re-united with a happy ending!

*I like the DVD's extras idea (old Shakespeare readings at Joss' house)
It's like Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and Gurnenthar's Ascendance all wrapped into one!
I don't know what's going on, but I'm very excited.

Also, strangely amused by the image of Fran snorkelling with a cocktail. Is he planning on pouring it down the end of the snorkel? Hmm, come to think of it, that's probably something everyone should try once.
Wait, what?

... Cool.
I am breathless with excitement!
From the English teacher who played Anywhere But Here with her students during the last five minutes of English Speaking class today:

woot!

*squeeeeeeeeeeeeee*

woot woot!
Excellent point. Very well made.
I'm looking at this and thinking "The Tempest".
Hey, wasn't the Rapture supposed to be this week? This feels like Rapture to me, so maybe the guy didn't get it wrong after all?
As to the comment about the order of the names, it's alphabetical, but in two groups: Acker through Morgese and Bates through Zar. The first group could be those playing the more major characters. The order could also be completely meaningless.
I noticed this also. Quite confusing.
When Sean tweeted a picture of a shirt he was wearing which he had borrowed from Joss, it confused me. But now it all makes sense. He didn't go over to Joss' to borrow a shirt, he was already there and asked if Joss had a purple shirt he could borrow.

Such such good news to wake up to on a Monday morning. How many times have we wished aloud that we could see those Shakespeare readings? Now we can. *Happy sigh*

(edited to add.) If you've been away for months, filming and you are about to disappear again, to edit, what better way to catch up with your friends than to film a movie with them?

[ edited by Lioness on 2011-10-24 12:52 ]
Aforementioned Elizabeth, retweeted by Alyson Hannigan, was a line producer for The Guild, according to her IMDB-page.
Her last tweet has a hashtag "frankranzsnorkels", so it's safe to say it is indeed Fran, on the poster.

@The One True b!X: I recognized Frans hand too! Not extremely 'exceptional hand-spotting skills', since I think Fran has very characteristic hands.
Ah, so that WAS Joss's shirt Sean was wearing! This is so exciting! I wonder who's playing Claudio and Hero?
So there are 18 actors listed, and (according to on-line sources) there appear to only be 16 parts in in Much Ado itself. There are also two more actresses than there are female parts in the play. I wonder if some parts were cross-cast.

I really want Nathan Fillion to be playing Don Juan. I kind of want Fran Kranz to be playing Claudio - but only if Claudio is played as being suitably evil (I'm kind of only interested in watching it if the misogyny is taken seriously - and I believe in Joss that it will).
So do we have a hashtag we are specifically using to spread the word and try to trend?
#MuchAdoAboutNothing? I wouldn't bother trying to trend it though - that kinda thing tends to put me off something.
I can usually tell which trends are actual news that people are talking about. I was excited to see Avengers trending, as it means people were not just watching the trailer, but talking about it.

I recently ran a successful Twitter Rally in conjunction with physical rallies across the country. Was quite effective at bringing the cause to more people's attention. Also seen people curious about #onsci (discussions about science and the public which happens once a month on Twitter) check out the hashtag, so they do have postivies as well as the clear negatives of hashtags like OMG JUSTIN BIEBER etc.
I only tend to look at trends if they're, uhm, trends - as in people are talking about something, instead of spamming about something. Avengers was a great example, as was the Buffy reboot. So, my opinion - tag something #MuchAdoAboutNothing if there is, well, something.
Joss Whedon doing Shakespeare would fulfill one of my wildest dreams! My living favourite writer-director + probably my favourite Shakespeare comedy = :-)))
Does anyone else think that picture of Nathan @trpcic looks a bit "prohibitiony"?

I'm imagining spats six feet below.

And Martini?
Wouldn't it make sense to hashtag it using the domain? #MuchAdoTheMovie? That's what was happening last night.
Wow. This is really breaking my brain right now. Amazing news.
IrrationalTV, my point was missed methinks. Though I'm sure it could be made more clear, I'm not sure I'm the man to do it.

First, take Wastelanders out of your head. I said nothing to contradict your comment, nor do I know enough to confirm or contradict you. It was mentioned in the interview about web series I linked to, but is unimportant here, which is my point. I think a lot of people assume Wastelanders was planned to be shot just after Avengers. The article does not state this.

My suggestion is that since Much Ado was shot just after Avengers, and that Joss said mere months ago he would like to shoot something for the Web just after Avengers, it seems obvious that Much Ado is the planned Web project to shoot after the Avengers. Perhaps that is crazy talk, I dunno.

Not sure what you mean about what else it could be even if it's on the web. If it's on the web it's on the web, which was my only care in the matter. I could of course be wrong, I have just found it very odd that no one has made this conclusion. There's a lot of discussion here and on the less informed news articles that it could be any sort of distribution for all we know. I just tried to offer a solution to that is all. :)
Nathan just tweeted that we broke it. Like usual.
Some of these have already been confirmed elsewhere, but a fuller list of who's playing what, per Trent Vanegas' blog: (Trent was an extra during shooting)

Beatrice: Amy Acker
Benedict: Alexis Denisof
Claudio: Fran Kranz
Hero: Jillian Morgese
Dogberry: Nathan Fillion
Leonato: Clark Gregg
Don Pedro: Reed Diamond
Ursula: Emma Bates
Leonato’s Aide: Joshua Zar

[ edited by Keiran on 2011-10-24 15:32 ]

[ edited by Keiran on 2011-10-24 15:36 ]
I'm thinking the tag should be #MuchAdoAboutSomething. :-)

Wow! Soooo very excited!
Oh, that is beyond exciting!!! I wonder who is playing Don John?
That's got to be Maher then, if he's not playing Claudio.

And I suspect that means Lenk's playing Verges, which would be awesome next to Fillion.
ETR: Quip made earlier (and better) upthread. Which I missed.

[ edited by Tin Ear Tom on 2011-10-24 20:45 ]
Joss is doing Shakespeare?!!! Did I fall asleep?
I think the lack of ASH, Williams, Day and some of the other usual suspects is probably because they were already on other projects (just because "Free Agents" got canceled now doesn't mean Mr. Head wasn't working on it during the relevant period) and, unlike Mr. Whedon, they cannot bend time and space at will ...
Zoinks.

Joss + Shakespeare = .....

=......

Actually there isn't enough awesome in the world to describe this. They'll have to invent a new term.
bobw1o,

Joss did specifically talk about doing Wastelanders after Avengers in an EW article a few weeks ago. FYI.

And am I the only one NOT head over heels about this? I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm excited to consume any- and everything Joss produces, but I much prefer original Joss-penned things. I'm sure he will have a different take on MAAN, and his imprint likely will be easily detectable, but it's all been done, and so many times. Now, I am in NO way attempting to dictate what Joss should do--he should do whatever he wants, of course--I am only stating my feelings on the matter.

I also realize that they may have been doing these readings anyway and just decided to film it. So it didn't actually take away from anything else he could have been doing. Assuming that is the case, I take back everything I said previously. ;-)
If this is a success, Joss should do "The Comedy of Errors" or "The Tempest" next.
Oooh, "The Tempest" would be great!! ASH as Prospero. I've never actually read/seen/watched MAAN, looks like it's time to break out the old Shakespeare anthology.
The purple man speaks, and the interwebs explode. And IRL, my roommate and I squealed around our living room like five year olds. So yeah, we're totally not excited for this.
Incredible, awesome news. I can't wait!
Much Ado is my favourite Shakespeare play, Joss is my favourite writer/director... and they're being combined along with some of my favourite actors?!

Hell. Yes!!! I am extremely excited.

Also curious...

I would like to know who is playing Don Juan. - Apparently Sean Maher according to EW. If true, awesome.

And why some of the people involved aren't listed on the poster (e.g. Emma Bates). - oops. I'm completely blind. She's there.

And how quite so many people who are listed on the poster can be in it, when there aren't that many roles (as mentioned by Maia). - Having seen the cast list at the EW link and on Gossi's site, it's probably I'm just not remembering how many roles there are.

And finally, I would like to know how I'm meant to concentrate at work when this fantastic news is bubbling away on the interwebs. - still don't know the answer to this one!

Edited to answer my own questions!

[ edited by Bluey on 2011-10-25 23:08 ]

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