“Avengers” director Joss Whedon is well-known for his work in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and for bringing “Buffy the Vampire” to television, but could he also take on Broadway?
During a Tribeca Film Festival panel Monday evening with “Avengers” actor Mark Ruffalo, a fan asked Whedon when we’ll get a Broadway musical from him.
“I was actually working on a musical earlier … or last year,” Whedon said to the crowd’s surprise. “Something that was very much a departure from the movies I’ve done.”
That shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise if you’re familiar with Whedon.
The 51-year-old director is a self-proclaimed theatre geek. His father was a screenwriter, and wrote off-Broadway musicals. Both his parents acted. Whedon himself directed a black and white version of “Much Ado About Nothing” in 2012. So he has an obvious love for the theatre.
However, it didn’t come to fruition for two reasons. The first was a little movie called “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” which Whedon directed.
“I had a little hitch of my giddyup on the musical partially because after ‘Ultron,’ it was just too much … there were too many moving parts, and I was like, I need to write something that I completely understand that I’m going to shoot. So, it’s taken a bit of a backseat.”
“Also, something else happened,” Whedon continued, aware of a particular cultural phenomenon. “Nobody will be surprised, even remotely, to hear that that something was ‘Hamilton.'”
Lin-Manuel Miranda was awarded the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for his work on the hip-hop Broadway show about Alexander Hamilton Monday afternoon.
“Which it was only after the album came out and I was listening to it 24/7 that I was like, ‘I can’t hear myself. I can only hear him,'” said Whedon. “So I was just like … I’ll get back to that … as soon as I stop listening to ‘Hamilton,’ in 2021.”
“I don’t blame you,” added Ruffalo.
Earlier in the hour, Ruffalo asked Whedon what music is to him, to which Whedon gave a very detailed answer.
“There’s two things that I would say about music, particularly,” he started. “One is that, you mentioned theatricality, as a part of my filmwork. There is a heightened state. Particularly, in a song, in a musical. If the musical is being done right, this is the moment, this is where it all comes out. This is where … everything is building to this, and you have this perfect state where, not only, is somebody articulating who they are and what they need, but it rhymes, like it was absolutely this pristine and very structured thing.
“Everything I do sort of is about that structure and about that moment of somebody going, ‘This is the best version of me that I can explain,'” he continued. “You’re always trying to hit that feeling, whether it’s sad, happy, or scary, whatever that feeling you get that a musical number is in that moment. You’re trying to hit those peaks all the time in conversation. I know that the stuff I write is occasionally less than naturalistic.”
While Whedon didn’t say what the play was about, it sounds like we won’t get to see a work from Whedon on Broadway — yet.
Instead, Whedon teased he has something else in the works.
“The thing that I’m writing now, by which I will not, unfortunately, say a damn thing except that it’s super good,” he teased.
What could that be? Well, at 2015’s San Diego Comic Con, Whedon announced one of his future projects was a comic called “Twist” centered around, what he described as, a Victorian female Batman.
We hope that’s what he was talking about. We’ll have to wait to find out.