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June 19 2012

The return of the Slayer - time for more Buffy on the big screen? James Dawson writes about why it's the right time for a Joss Whedon Buffy movie starring Sarah Michelle Gellar and what it might involve.

Won't they first have to pry it away from the other "executive producers"? Or has that issue been resolved?
We can dream.
Yea, dreaming's nice. Realistically, now that SMG's pregnant again, it'll likely be a few years before she'd even consider this, so...
Well, just as long as the original Slayer, Kristy Swanson, shows up with her husband, Luke Perry of course, and they ask Buffy if they can help. Buffy asks how, and then Hit Girl All Grown Up shows up to go all River Tam on a couple of demons. "Your daughter?", Buffy asks, and Kristy and Luke respond, "well, add it all up and...well, you know. We're not the movie, either, but could be an alleged sequel." As I said before, nothing wrong with a few dozen spare Slayers, especially if they work for the FBI.
Would Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox have to team-up to bring the television version of Buffy to the big screen?
If we were to ever have a big screen Buffy, I'd rather it be an alternate reality type event, where Cordelia, Fred, Wesley, Anya etc can still be in it, and both Buffy characters and Angel characters can join forces to fight some big evil.

Also, I would rather it didn't focus on potential slayers, and the fact that there thousands of slayers out in the world now. I'd kind of want it to be old school. Which would be hard to sell, however, due to the actors' aging.
I know everybody is talking about more Avengers, more Buffy and more Firefly but, as much as I would like more stuff in the Serenity universe, how about something ORIGINAL?
Did any of you ever read a comic book called Promethea? Its by superstar comic writer Alan Moore (V for Vendetta, Watchmen, From Hell, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen).

The broad mythology of Promethea is somewhat similar to Buffy...each generation there's a passing of the (super-powered) torch. A new vessel is chosen (sort of).

I'd love to see Joss tackle Buffy in about 10 years--it could be a passing the torch story and Buffy could have a final moment of selflessness. A death worthy of the greatest slayer of all time. Then its all about the new.
Have to say I'm with Rikardo on this. I really did love Buffy and Angel, I've probably watched both series 3 times through, but I'm plenty OK with Joss moving on to different, new things.
Speaking of Promethea and Buffy, the commentary to the Buffy episode showing the final battle with Adam at the end of the Fourth Season explicitly cites Promethea as the inspiration.
Wow Squishy! That's pretty freaking cool! I'm definitely going to re-watch it the next time I have 43 minutes free!

Its one of those comic series that flew under the radar. The story is fantastic and the artwork is amazing. I love that it's loaded with two page splashes. The lush artwork makes you spend more time looking at the art than reading the few lines of dialog that accompany those types of splash pages.

Here's an example for anyone interested.
Buffy and Angel space frakking in 3D!
Hopefully that would be in the five minute info-dump where Buffy catches us up on what's been going on.
I'll take more Buffy in any Whedon associated way that he will give it to us. Of course, I'd love a Gellar/Whedon combo (of course) and I'd really love to have David Boreanaz. That would be my fantasy. But with Whedon at the wheel, I'd even be up for a reboot with a (preferably unknown) new Buffy. I don't want to see Reese Witherspoon (for example) taking Sarah's role. But if there is a new, talented actress who could do the reboot, I'd at least bite.

In the end, although I'd love a big screen Buffy, what I really want is 7 more seasons of mythology packed, original series stars,Sarah Michelle Gellar Prinze brooding, Spike quippng, Xander+Anya (figure it out), queen Cordelia having, Allyson Hannigan loving, Bronze visitng goodness. And chocolate.
Since Joss.and his co-creators seem to be content with telling the ongoing slayer adventures in comics, I'm satisfied with that format.
I'm with Rikardo and MrArg. As much as I love the existing 'verses, I can't wait to see what other amazing worlds and characters are brewing in that brain!
I'm still waiting for Die Hard On A Bridge....
To be fair, a second Buffy movie was on the cards back in '98.
Die Hard On a Bridge (otherwise known as Suspension) might have been made to work at the time it was written. I don't think it'd work today. Although there's one action gag that made me cackle aloud at its awesome ridiculousness.
How about a remake of the original with Joss doing it according to his original vision?
I'd like to see Buffy wake up like in Normal Again, get released from the mental hospital, monsters appear, she finds the "real" counterparts of the Scoobies and becomes the slayer again...
That's the kind of idea that makes me wish someone like FX would do a 13-episode anthology series, where each episode is a separate sort of "what if..." story. Let interesting writers play with the Buffy idea in an interesting and exciting way without worrying about mucking anything up.
To be honest, I don't think there's any way Whedon could/would do a Buffy movie with SMG that would sell. For all the reasons laid out in the article, he would have to abandon the mythology, particularly the comics, I just don't think he'd be willing to do that, not with all the work he's put in in Seasons 8 & 9. What he could do, however, is a new work in the Buffyverse with a new slayer. Some of the Scoobies et al could possibly cameo or even be major characters (I'd LOVE to see, say Illyria guiding a fresh young slayer) and it could be a Buffy (or, Muffy, perchance) for a new generation. And, I do like the idea of SMG having a cameo where she hands off the torch, if they set it a bit in the future, it presumably wouldn't overly interfere with the comic story arc.
The only way I see a Buffy movie based on the television series working is if they dump everything that happened after season three.

The simple fact is that a movie will have to be made for a mass audience and not the hardcore fans. And, in the popular consciousness, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is still a high school girl that slays vampires. And the longer the canon material ran, the further it moved away from that high concept.

It was relatively easy to go from Firefly to Serenity since it didn't have as much baggage as the slayerverse has. Serenity acted as both a reboot for the first-time viewers and a continuation of the story for the long-time fans.

A Buffy movie would probably have to pick up ten, fifteen, or twenty years after "Graduation Day" (a high school reunion?), and feature the core group of characters from that era: Buffy, Xander, Willow, Giles, Angel, Cordelia, and Oz. That's a simple concept for mainstream audiences. The further in you go, the more you have to deal with like Spike and Buffy's complicated relationship, Dawn, Faith, Willow's changed orientation, the Slayer Army, the destruction of Sunnydale, the death of magic, etc. It becomes a continuity-heavy mess that is going to confuse anyone who isn't intimately familiar with the minutia of the canon. It's not just a matter of ignoring the comic books.

It's why "Star Trek" works as a movie and not something like Babylon 5. Star Trek: The Motion Picture functioned as an extended episode of a series that was not continuity-heavy and full of change, deaths, and character arcs. Babylon 5 was a continuity-based series with a rigid story arc that had nearly constant change throughout its five year run. Anyone can watch Star Trek The Motion Picture and catch up to speed where you're seeing the old gang getting back together for a new caper.

Nobody is going to put up an eight-figure budget to make a big special effects movie to satisfy a small group of hardcore fans. It's going to have to be something simple to satisfy mainstream and international audiences who don't know anything about an army of slayers or why Buffy has a fake sister.
I love the Buffyverse, but a.) that scenario from the link above sounds like The Long Kiss Goodnight crossed with Alias, not Buffy and b.) I don't need more Buffyverse on my TV.

Just because I loved a series doesn't mean I need sequels or spin-offs. And both SMG and Joss seem to have moved on.

... however, if Joss wants to do a televisual Fray or continue the comics adventures, I would be entirely game. That's a story that needs closure!
I would always welcome more Buffy, in movie or TV form. But I would be afraid of it too.

Someone would likely die, and I don't really want to see that. And without Spike I wouldn't even be interested.

Not to mention spacefrakking, but I imagine unless Joss financed it himself there would be someone with enough sense to veto that idea.
It could be done. The question is whether its worth the risk of marring the best show in television history. I vaguely remember Joss saying something like the comic was canon "unless he got a big budget movie offer" to do buffy. That would be my only requirement-he'd have to dump the comic storyline.
What about Joss Whedon making a whole new Buffy back in high school?
There are ways the comics storyline could be encapsulated in a few sentences, maybe a few cartoon scens like in the expanded TV version of the original Dune feature.

I just have a feeling like, in spite of what he's said in 2003/4 about the Buffyverse being a whole world full of tellable stories, Joss is setting a course to destroy it as a distinct world so he won't be tempted ever to re-visit it.
If we're going to have a slayer on the big screen again, I'd much rather it be Fray.
I wouldn't actually mind some animated movies in the vein of the DC/Marvel ones based on the comic books? Solves the ageing issue with the actors as well as keeping the continuity of the past few years worth of stories.

In fact the fabled TV movies from 2005 could be incorporated too!
Still holding out for a "Tales of the Slayers" anthology, touching on various members of the new Slayer generation, with cameos by the original characters as the link...
Agreed, skynet, a Fray movie (or trilogy!) would be much cooler. It would also be much more accessible to new viewers, since it doesn't have 7 years of TV backstory. The Fray comic is a great origin story, and the sequels could go in sooo many different directions from there. I really want to know what happens next.

Plus would probably do really well right now: vampires are popular, futuristic dystopias are

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