Thanks to OMG Squee, here is a transcription of what Joss Whedon said about The Avengers at the recent Melbourne Writers’ Festival:
Sue: So – in terms of coming up to the Avengers though – because – that’s not your script originally is it?
Joss: It is now. Yeah. There was a script, but I had a different take on it. And when they showed it to me I said “But this doesn’t work for me, I would do something different.” And they said, “Well tell us what you would do,” and now I’m doing it.
Sue: And they’re trust you to do that?
Joss: They do! They do, Marvel – they’re very trusting at Marvel. It’s kind of like, in the early days of the WB, when you know, I came back to my agent and said, it was really different, really interesting, they respected what I was talking about, they listened to me and they really let me have my own way – and yeah, they have no idea what I’m doing! Marvel they do actually know, they know exactly what they want to do, but they don’t mind a film maker making his film in the service of what it is they want to do, they’re not trying to press me into something that isn’t me, which is really gratifying.
Sue: [mentions again they’ll be opening the floor for questions soon and in the process forgets her own question] Along the lines of, this is a great moment – finally you get to join up your comic book love and the possibility of making a film – don’t you think it’d be a great TV Series though.? – never mind! But, you get to make the film, so. Clearly that’s joining the dots in a particular kind of way.
Joss: Oh yes. Oh yes. I was reading the Avengers when I was eleven, this is…it’s a big deal for me. I’ve wanted to make a comic book movie, and I was like, “nobody can make a comic book movie”, and then Spiderman came out and I was like “…ok, he can make a comic book movie!”. And you know, there’s been a couple of hits. But most of them I think haven’t – and I also feel that we sort of, we went from the really terrible Hollywood executive’s idea of what a comic book movie should be, to a very short moment when we sort of started getting it right, and then went directly to post-modern. Directly to Watchmen, Kick Ass, Dark Knight, where we’re sort of, we’re taking the comic book movie for granted, now we want to see what’s behind it. I’m like “Whoa-whoa-whoa! Wait a minute!”. First I want to see an awesome movie about superheros that are awesome, that I really care about the whole time, I haven’t seen enough of those. I don’t want to deconstruct it yet! First I want to construct it. So I do feel like there’s still a place for me out there. Even though you know, the genre which I had been desperate to see my whole childhood, and then my adulthood saw it happen while I was busy making TV Shows so I was like, “no I’m not…just wait! Just wait! I’ll be there in a minute!”. And then began to fear, is it over? But ultimately I think it’s very much not.
The Avengers is scheduled for a May 4, 2012 release.