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November 07 2011

Joss Whedon talks about 'Much Ado About Nothing'. Plus fab new pics from the movie!

That was a great interview. Loved it. Also, "TEENAGE GIRLS OF THE INTERNET" should totally be something. I'm not sure what. It's just a title.
I think it is gossi, just not something you wanna google without safe search on.
But yes, great interview.
I did not think of that.
Teenage girls should always interview Joss. What a fun interview that was.
The best Joss interviews frequently seem to be by people who don't normally get to interview people like him, or haven't been trained (whether by schooling or career) on "the right way" to do it.
This is great. I thought I was at the end but there are two more pages of someone asking him the right questions and now they're talking about school.
I loved his use of the term "potato show". I've never heard those sorts of shows described that way and I'm totally stealing that phrase.

Great interview.
oh my God, I love smart and funny. I want to use segue-tastic on somebody right now! 'It's the human; not the hymen!' LOL classic Joss.
This made me excited all over again to see this movie!
I loved Joss' advice to students that they need someone to help them interpret Shakespeare: when I was a kid I would get a recording of the Shakespeare play I was studying (public libraries often had Shakespeare in record form, because all I had back then was a turn table... no video) and it was perfect to read a long with the actors who understood what they were saying and infused sense into the text for me. I'm just so excited to see what Joss does with this material!
I'm impressed the interviewer knew he had subscribed to Sassy - I don't recall seeing that anywhere before. Actually, I was impressed with the entire interview. The Wonder Woman stuff was pure gold (and sadness-inducing).
Definitely agree, embers. When I took my Shakespeare class a few semesters ago, I always watched the BBC versions of the plays on YouTube while I read. At the time I felt like I was cheating by doing so, but Joss has a great point--those plays are meant to be performed, and you can't really grasp the entire meaning without seeing a performance.

Back to the topic at hand, spring can't get here soon enough. Seeing Amy and Alexis on screen together again will be totes awesome. :)
What a wonderful interview. Joss should be interviewed more by people who will not just ask him about why he write strong female characters.

BTW, just got myself a copy of the play so I can get better acquainted with it before the movie. Was not a Shakespeare work that I was aware of before learning about this project.
I really enjoyed that interview. According to that her bio, Tavi, the interviewer, is fifteen years old. Man, I was never that clear and composed at fifteen. All of Joss's interviews should be with intelligent "amateurs."

I'm sort of wondering how that festival circuit release thing is going to work out for me in terms of viewing. So often, as with so many other art oriented things, the good stuff kinda skips over the middle of the country. I'll bet I won't have a chance to see it until the (fingers crossed) DVD sales. I imagine those of us not in the States are also thinking along the same lines.

Still really excited about it's mere existence though. ;-)
That was a fantastic interview! She asked so many great questions!

The Wonder Woman film sounds wonderful. Sigh. I want to visit the alternate universe where he got to do that.

Also, as Montanan, I am extremely depressed about my chances of seeing Much Ado anywhere near when it is released. :(
This is *such* a good interview! All kinds of interesting, intelligent questions. I love the pictures from the movie, too--I can't wait to see this movie. I was excited about Avengers until this news broke ... now I just want to see MAAN sooner than humanly possible.

And I was thrilled to read his descriptions of Hero as "fierce" and Claudio as forgivable. They so often seem to be interpreted as meek (Hero) and douchey (Claudio)--sort of background characters who drive the plot while Benedick and Beatrice are the whole show. I've always thought those were kind of boring takes on the characters--and it sounds like here they will get to be genuinely interesting, sympathetic characters. So, yay! :-)
It was one of the best interviews I've read with Joss in a long time, my only critique is the interviewer talks too much about herself and her problems in my opinion. However the majority of it was vastly more informative and enlightening on Joss than 99% of the standard media interviews he does these days. She should considering doing more journalistic interviewing though because she really brought out a personal side of Joss that we rarely get to see. Great work!
I saw her own issues as relevant to the discussion, personally. Certainly the discussion got there organically; it didn't seem like the interviewer just sort of shoehorned those parts in.
Just added Tavi Gevinson's impressive interlocutory to my page of links to Joss interviews.
I think it's a really good example of a conversational interview style. It's very genuine, and there's a nice give and take going on. It reminded me immediately of the knitting blog interview, which was also a bit chatty but in a way that captured some really interesting comments about creative work from both participants.
Wait, they all didn't get in the big collars and quilted hose and dance to a lute at the Shakespeare parties? I am mortally bummed.

Yeah, Tavi & Joss had a nice rapport, and their conversational style was informative & very readable. Tavi deserves a Big Gold Star and so does Joss. (Yeah, Sunfire, it also reminded me of Kim Werker's "Crochet Me" interview, as well.) Two intelligent & creative people talking is so much better to read than the usual same-old same-old interview.

Hamlet is my favorite, too. Macbeth is next... For some reason, I liked the comedies best when I was younger, but I've moved into loving the tragedies as I got older...

Some really great quotes in that interview.

Its all futile and soon the human race will die out. And now, geometry! This isosceles triangle will save us all!

(I agree, but I think it's the equilateral triangle that will do the trick. Seriousfully.)

ETF: Typos galore.

[ edited by QuoterGal on 2011-11-08 09:00 ]
I was very interested in Joss's comments on Leonato and his behavior in the story. A number of years back the Long Wharf Theater did an amazing production of "Much Ado", set in the Harlem Renaissance. One of the best Shakespeare productions I've ever seen. I'd seen the play before, and have seen other productions since, and one of the things that really stood out for me in the Long Wharf production, and I think this was due to just how incredibly good the actor was, was how very much the story was about Leonato as a father. Everyone sees it as a play about two pairs of lovers, and it almost seems as though the Hero/Claudio set is just a hook that is used to hang the much more fun story of Beatrice and Benedick. But I remember as I was watching it at Long Wharf the second time (because I would have gone and seen it every night it played if I could have afforded it), thinking, oh, this is the story of a father and his feelings about his daughter.
Oooh. Thanks, Pointy. I just added your link page to my bookmarks.
I thought that the interviewer's personal comments actually nudged Joss into going more deeply into the subject than he might have otherwise (certainly I felt that he told more about his own teen years than he has in the past). I think it is one of the best interviews I've ever read with Joss.

BTW I don't think that would work with an adult interviewer, but I do think that Joss wanted to connect w/the teenager by opening up more (encouraging her to really take advantage of her school days).

[ edited by embers on 2011-11-08 04:09 ]
This is the best Joss interview I've read by a very large margin.
My pleasure, BreathesStory!

Impressive young Rookie.
Great interview. I agree that he seemed to open up more because of the youth of his interviewer and audience. At the same time, it seemed like he took things more seriously than he usually does, evidently because of how his responses might influence more impressionable minds. Finally, that interviewer was phenomenally good for her age or for any age.

BTW, anyone know when will this movie will be coming to a theater near me?!
I like how Joss included The Cutting Edge on his list of great romantic comedies. It's always been one of my faves. just re watched it about a week and a half ago. Barring some clothing it holds up really, really well. D.B. Sweeney and Moira Kelly were great.

One thing I'll have to disagree with Joss about, is his world view:

Well, I think the world is largely awful, and getting worse, and eventually the human race will die out.

I think the world is pretty much the way it always has been. But, now we know about all the bad - usually ten minutes after it happened. There are also a lot more people and cultures to rub up against each other. What we have is increased complexity, and as a system it hasn't sorted itself out yet into a new stability. I think it's a hard and dangerous time because we might not mature fast enough as humans to deal with all the technology we are developing, but I certainly don't think it's a foregone conclusion that we won't be able to.

Anyone ever read Spiral Dynamics? It's a theory about human growth and development that addresses it on both the personal and cultural-wide scales. I think it's a really valid theory and I personally find that it explains a lot of other-wise inexplicable behavior that I see around me, including all the bad stuff that upsets Joss and every other sensitive, thinking person. It's the one book I recommend as essential to people who are interested in such things. Knowledge is power.
This is the best interview I've ever read with Joss, and I love how she brings her own experiences into it, it's exactly how teenagers learn empathy. Teenagers generally are pretty bad at empathy, they test it out by talking about themselves and I think it made for a really interesting discussion.

Too many interviewers try to outsmart him, or match him, or impress him, and she didn't, she was just herself and it was great.
Lovely interview.

He does know how to pick em.
Gosh, what a fantastic interview.
Fantastic piece. It made me feel like I wasn't reading an interview which is a good thing. Also, all the education related talk made my alternatively educated self very happy. ;)

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2011-11-08 13:53 ]
Tavi is AMAZING.

If you're unfamiliar with her - or have a teenage daughter- I highly recommend looking up her previous blogs and articles. She had a fashion blog going on for a while (that she started when she was TWELVE) and Rookie Mag is her latest and greatest adventure that addresses a lot of teenager issues head-on in ways "Teen Vogue" and "Seventeen" would never touch. It makes me wish I had this resource when I was younger.

Perfect person to interview Joss - If I recall correctly, this is the same blog that had the "advice to high schoolers" article many moons back with Joss's advice included.
The Cutting Edge??????? Oh, Joss. I know you probably were making a funny, but how that thing leapt so easily to your lips from your mind!

You do get points though dear man, >>>>>>>>1 kabillion for probably being about to turn on a
whole new generation to Shakespeare. So there. :-)
I'm always glad to read Joss interviews. And I'm always glad to see Rookie getting more attention, as it's a fantastic site. So this is a wonderful morning!

Also, "I failed America and its territories" may be my new phrase for admitting defeat.
His Girl Friday. God I love that film. Great interview.
Fantastic interview. I love all of the specifics, especially about how the character dynamics are handled in MAAD and the new info about "Wonder Woman." Thank you Tavi!
Tavi is terrific. This was like sitting with her and Joss at a table full of good things to eat and drink and hearing a real conversation between two people who interest each other.
There seem to be no extra agenda(s), no points to check off, no self-image-burnishing. Just good communication.
Terrific interview!

[ edited by johanna on 2011-11-08 21:23 ]
Enjoyed the Branagh-love too.

I know it wasn't really love, as such, but that's the snappiest I could do.

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