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Angel’Angel’ is dead, but Whedon’s still alive
By Jerome Maida
Saturday 22 May 2004, by Webmaster
Although his "Angel" series has now officially been staked, don’t expect writer/director/producer Joss Whedon’s imagination and passion for breathing life into exciting characters to turn to dust.
He is currently working on two high-profile projects dear to his heart.
One is "Astonishing X-Men," a Marvel comic starring created just for him, and which hits shelves May 26.
Then, next month filming starts on "Serenity," an epic adventure movie which continues the saga of the crew of his short-lived "Firefly" TV series.
With numerous other projects percolating as well, how does he do it all?
"I take on too many things," Whedon admits, "and then at some point, I panic. I lose a lot of sleep or ignore my family...and somehow I manage to cope."
"This is actually a light year for me," he says. "Last year I had three TV shows ("Buffy The Vampire Slayer," "Angel" and "Firefly")...So, this year, just one movie and a comic book...is actually a pretty light workload."
There are some who might question why an accomplished TV creator like Whedon would write a comic book but he has a simple answer.
"When I was a teenager, the ’X-Men’ was the most extraordinary book out there," he says. "It’s really just a question of childhood love. Most guys (their dream) would be a chance to play for the Yankees. For me...It would be to write the X-Men."
Whedon’s run on the book will last at least a year, and he says he may stay longer if he has the time to do quality work.
"This isn’t a lark," he says. "This isn’t like a hobby. It has to be as good as you can possibly make it."
"Serenity," Whedon says, will appeal to fans old and new, and offer vindication for the cult hit, which ran only half a season on Fox last year.
"The show worked," Whedon says. "[Universal] just completely understood it, whereas Fox just completely never did...I don’t understand why they gave me the money to make it."
Whedon says the show’s original cast will be back for the movie, and to expect an epic tale with a universal theme.
"It’s about freedom," he says.
As for the "Buffyverse," Whedon says Buffy Summers will likely never hit the big screen - due to continued disinterest from star Sarah Michelle Gellar - but that "Ripper," a long-rumored BBC movie/miniseries starring popular "Buffy" character Giles - will become a reality someday.
As for "Angel," he says any future plans for the characters are "purely hypothetical" and he has mixed feelings about the end of the series.
"I have more stories to tell, and I love the people I was working with," he says. "But, you know, we got five years in. We made our mark. We did over 100 episodes. You know? I think we did pretty well in establishing the show as it’s own thing so...I feel grief, but not desolation."
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