In this interview with Joss Whedon about the upcoming Much Ado movie we learn a couple of interesting bits:
- Although the Shakespeare readings at his house have been going on 10 years and started during Buffy, Sarah Michele Gellar did not take part. I expect he threw this in there because it’s a frequently asked question – she’s still arguably the most well known name to come out of that series (that is, outside the Whedon universe).
- Nathan Fillion, cast as Dogberry, had never read Shakespeare before. “People are thinking spin-off!” Whedon says.
He goes on to talk about how a Shakespeare movie is similar to The Avengers, but isn’t that what all directors and actors do when they’re interviewed? Talk about how it’s all basically drawing from the same source? I get his point – that both works are ensemble pieces, and you need to clearly understand and present why each character is there – but I wouldn’t call it a groundbreaking opinion.
What got me most curious was that spinoff idea. Could you imagine that? You take a well known cast of characters from a world where spinoffs and sequels abound (that being the comic/sci-fi world). Then you drop some Shakespeare on them. They don’t need to glorify the text like we do – they just want to see their favorite characters having new adventures. So, why not?
We’ve talked about Shakespeare sequels in the past, but I don’t think we’ve ever done spin-offs. What would a Dogberry spin-off look like? Could you get a movie out of it, or a whole television series?