This site will work and look better in a browser that supports web standards, but it is accessible to any browser or Internet device.

Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"You forced me to come to Arizona. I loathe Arizona."
11976 members | you are not logged in | 08 April 2020


June 23 2013

An 'Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.' mystery - was Nick Brendon up for J. August Richards' role? Bleeding Cool reports on what Nick Brendon told a panel at Albuquerque Comic Expo yesterday.

Nicholas Brendon, Emma Caulfield, Charisma Carpenter,... i hope they'll work again with Joss one way or another.

These days it seems like every TV writer or showrunner is a fan of Whedon's work. That's why i don't understand how in the same time so many Buffyverse actors are not getting lead/regular acting roles on their shows. How can you watch Buffy/Angel and not wanna work with Alexis or Emma or Charisma or Amy or Nick or Amber or James...??
Buffy and Angel aired a long time ago in Hollywood years. Most of the actors are either approaching or well into middle age; they've simply aged out of a lot of opportunities to work now. Plus, Joss himself has not rehired many of them in subsequent projects. That says a great deal if he chooses (for whatever reason) not to work you again. You end up on the convention circuit talking about the glory days.
Well Nick is on TV albeit in a small role, Charisma has worked constantly again maybe not in a major lead character but still as an actor constant work is always a plus. Amber seems to be writing more than anything. Alexis and Emma are the most confusing to me as Emma has great comic timing which would suit a lot of mainstream shows or sitcoms and Alexis seems to be a very good actor for roles that are popular like cop, Lawyer, Politician etc.

But we don't know everything(and nor should we) Alexis has a very successful wife and maybe making sure there's time for family is more important than taking roles that might keep him away. There can always be personal reasons things don't work out as we might think they should.

Also for the bigger characters from Buffy there's always the danger that people don't want to use you because they think people will always see you as your character or maybe the only offers you get are blatant copies of your Buffy/Angel role.

I think it can be difficult to make a fresh start after being successful in a genre show look at how many Star Trek actors do very little after their series ends. It can be tough even SMG Buffy herself has hardly set the world alight since the show ended.
Long time lurker, first time commenter. Nick Brendon said this a week ago at Slay-a-thon in Chicago. I have a video of it, if anyone is interested?
I have never understood the vague contempt I've perceived out of wide swaths of the "Buffy" audience for Nick Brendon. Transference from the equally inexplicable contempt for his character? The track record is there, given the infamy of how Amber Benson and Marc Blucas were both handled those many years back. I mean, is a reflection of Joss' judgment of his principal star from those days that he wasn't worked her again? I'm thinking that no.
AoS seriously dodged a bullet then as far as this viewer is concerned. So happy JAR got the role. Wise decision.

KoC my primary issue is that IMO NB simply is not a convincing actor.

[ edited by IrrationaliTV on 2013-06-23 19:25 ]
Reading the article, and I found this sort of fascinating, was that they were talking about a character's race changing from the comic page to the big screen. Which has already happened. In original continuity Nick Fury was white. Then in the Ultimate universe they pretty much made him Samuel L, but it means we got him in the movies.

Xander was always one of my favorite characters on Buffy; in a lot of ways he was someone I could relate to. I was sad to see him fade to the background in season six, and it seemed like NB had this inner darkness to him at times. I didn't want Xander to go full evil obviously, but I think there was more to NB than most people realize.

On the other hand, I always thought JAR was sort of one note on Angel until season five. Then he blew me away once he was "lawerized" and I wanted to see more of him. So I'm glad he got this gig on SHIELD and I'm curious to see what sort of character he'll play.
I certainly wouldn't call it "contempt", but Nick Brendon's struggles with alcohol have made me wary. Fairly or unfairly, I just can't shake the feeling that there are demons there that aren't going to rest easily. Said with concern, but at the same time... I think it makes him a harder hire.
Over the years, any time the guy says anything that suggests he was held in any esteem by cast or crew, considered for any particular role outside "Buffy" or alternative plotline within it, it's usually met with at least some accusations that its puffery or just outright fraud -- even though nobody in a position to do so has ever refuted any of it. Oh wait, they're just being polite, seen that too. I've sensed that around the neighborhood (not here specifically in fairness) even with regard to him being involved creatively in the next season of "Buffy" continuation. It's just sort of frustrating, I've never gotten it. Even if you don't think he's a good actor, it's not like he walked up to your porch and kicked your dog, ya'll.

I do think the race change possibility is worth noting, because, while Marvel did change Fury's race for Ultimates, and certainly there is a lot of that out there in terms of clamor for this or that given character... ain't nobody out there race-changing a comic character to make them white. So it does raise the legitimate possibility that J. (do people go with "J" or "Jay"? Since I've many times heard him called that like it's a first name) is playing a character that has followed the Fury path.
NB is the only Jossverse cast member I've met in person (though I'll be adding Jewel and JAR this fall - yay!) and he seemed perfectly nice. That said, I do recall watching group interviews and tiring of him very quickly. The PaleyFest reunion has always stuck out. He just rubbed me the wrong way and added a really weird energy to the whole thing.

I'm interested to see what he brings to Season 10, though I'll admit that I find it an odd choice as I don't think I recall him doing much writing in the past.

I like Xander quite a lot. He's not my favourite character in the Buffyverse (and he's my least favourite of the core four) and I've found him to be a pain in the ass at certain times, but he's still a solid and relatable character.
J. (which is what everybody seems to call him) August Richards and Joss Whedon have both said that J. did some of the Shakespeare readings at Joss Whedon's house, so he seems to have been in the Whedon rep company all along, just not on the screen for whatever reason. Let's not forget that J. was a series regular on two different shows, one of which I think was still on during "Dollhouse," and of course he was still on "Angel" during "Firefly."
I wouldn't want to be Joss. It msut be liking picking rewards for your kids or students or friends. Ugh. And I bet Tom Hiddleston was beyond miffed that he didn't get picked up for Much Ado. Now, Joss not only has his regular troupe of actors but even MEGA STARS, that might be interested in his "side" projects.

I do see JAR in Agent of Shield more then NB. And I think that's personal preference because I just see JAR as more versatile.

I remain confused why James Marsters has never been hired for anything by Joss post-Angel (which was supposedly a requirement by the network for continuance). I consider him one of the best and most versatile is the whedonesque actors (worlds above NB).
"KoC my primary issue is that IMO NB simply is not a convincing actor."

Never watched Private Practice I assume.

Joss recently said he was planning a Firefly episode with James Marsters, but he's also been clear that when he casts someone he's looking for the right person for the part, not just recasting someone he's used before.
Well, the Firefly episode would have been ages ago; Marsters would have been part of the 'troupe' that included Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof. And certain actors (AA, NF, AD) seem to be cast whatever the part. But perhaps there has actually been no part in any of the subsequent Whendonverse works for which Marsters would have been suitable; seems unlikely given his range but must be the case.
I did see him in Private Practice. Was not impressed.
So, just again to be clear, it's only Nick Brendon for whom we should take subsequent non-employment by Joss in other productions an an implied slight against his abilities, or maybe bad breath, or something? Since it doesn't apply to the actual and pretty substantial majority* of his "Buffy"/"Angel" principals who have yet to turn up in "Firefly"/"Dollhouse"/"Dr. Horrible"/"Cabin"/"Avengers"/"Agents of SHIELD"?

*(i.e. including but not limited to the actors portraying Buffy, Angel, Spike, Willow, Anya, Dawn, Giles, Joyce, Connor, Cordelia, Harmony, Oz, Riley, Tara, etc)
Re; James Marsters. The impression I've gotten is that Joss was
irritated by the loss of control caused by the character of
Spike. This would not stop him if he thought James was the right
man but it means James is not only not on speed dial, in fact I
doubt if he's in Joss's personal directory. And fwiw for
somewhat different reasons Charisma Carpenter is also out.

Excluding the three Firefly cast members who later worked on
Buffy/Angel and Eliza Duschu on Dollhouse who are special cases
the people who have gotten re-used seem to fall into two groups;

1) They were part of the Shakespeare readings and because of
that Joss is very familiar with their work.

2) They were either outstanding or close to it in a minor role
in a previous series or movie.
Giles (Tony Head) almost appeared in 'Much Ado'... but then he got too busy and luckily Clark Gregg was available after all.
There also has to be a balance of 'want them for a part' and 'available for a part.' Though I do think some of the people Joss reuses are personal friends that he likes hanging with. That being said, he's made it clear he wouldn't cast someone that wasn't right for a part because they're a friend.
I think I read somewhere (in all the press for Much Ado?) that Sean Maher asked Joss if there was anything for him in S.H.I.E.L.D. and Joss shook his head; Maher was honest and said, "in Joss he trusts" and that if Joss doesn't think he's right for the role, then he wasn't.

The thing is: one great knack Joss has is casting the perfect person for each role. But if he only reused actors, then we'd never get new actors to bring into the Whedonverse fold. So it's wonderful when he reuses actors and has a sort of repertory troupe, but if he had cast, say, Dollhouse with ex-BtVS/AtS/FF actors, we wouldn't know Fran Kranz or Enver Gjokaj, right?
Oh dear. I was hoping the comments would be filled with speculation over who J August Richards is playing and sadly instead it's filled with people questioning Nick Brendon's talent and skill as an actor and accusing Joss of favoritism.

I will just say this. If Joss didn't believe Nick Brendon, and for that matter every other actor he has worked with, wasn't talented I seriously doubt he would have ever hired them for a part in the first place. And hiring an actor he as previously worked with has many contributing factors, several of which I'm sure we are likely unaware of, so it's unfair to judge Joss or the actors who do or do not get the parts for a complex hiring process since it often results in projects (and characters) most of us ultimately love.
corinna, thank you for writing a much more classy comment than I feel capable of after reading the rest of this thread just now. I expect the tenor of this thread to improve from this point onward. It's been pretty awful.
I haven't seen anyone mention that casting is not always 100% up to Joss. There are other producers and people involved. If you aren't right for the part, that's all there is. I can't imagine presuming to know what goes on in casting and juggling the different opinions.
I heart NB. I heart JAR. I'm happy to have either ( or both!) on the screen in any project that interests me, Whedonverse or not. I'm even happy if the project doesn't interest me, though admittedly a little less so.
Dean: I don't watch much series TV because of poor reception and a hearing problem, but there seem to be plenty of guest spots played by people in their late 30s and early 40s. And ELiza, Mercedes, Miracle, and most of the Fire-Flygirls (sorry) are in their early 30s, the prime work years for most actresses.

[ edited by DaddyCatALSO on 2013-06-25 22:05 ]

This thread has been closed for new comments.

You need to log in to be able to post comments.
About membership.

joss speaks back home back home back home back home back home