Joss Whedon Clarifies, Adds To His Comments On Sexism In Comic Book Movies, Remains Excellent

Kitty Pryde forever.


Yesterday, we told you about Joss Whedon speaking up last summer against the “genuine, recalcitrant, intractable sexism, and old-fashioned quiet misogyny” in the world of comic book movies. Now, Whedon has clarified his comments; but don’t worry, he doesn’t take back anything he said. 

In an exclusive interview with BuzzFeed yesterday, Whedon said he thinks he “sounded very harsh,” especially in light of Marvel’s Captain Marvel and Black Panther film announcements (which were made after his summer interview). “I was just like, great! Now I just sound mean and bitter. But, you now,” added Whedon, “there’s a lot to be mean and bitter about.” Oh, we know that all to well around these parts.

Whedon was also very enthusiastic about the Captain Marvel adaptation, which he says he knew was in the works when he spoke with Digital Spy. “I obviously was a cheerleader,” he said, “but [Kevin Feige] had to get all the ducks in a row and get all the minds in agreement. I think being a part of Disney maybe makes it easier, because they’re open to it. And Marvel now is in a position to shake up its own paradigm, because it’s got such a success record.” He added [bolding emphasis ours]:

Honestly, you know, Guardians [of the Galaxy] might have helped it, just because that was outside what was considered to be their box and did so well that— Well, let’s put it this way: If a raccoon can carry a movie, then they believe maybe even a woman can.

Joss for President.

Though Whedon doesn’t want to “rule anything out,” when it comes to directing Captain Marvel, he reiterated what he had previously expressed with regards to Avengers: Infinity War: he really wants to make his own things for a while and create his own universe. And his current ideas sound pretty intriguing:

The first thing I thought of was “turn-of-the-century female Batman.” Not Batman actually. But, you know, something cool. One person. Can’t stress that enough. Movie about one person — not a team, not 10, just one. But [I would] do a nice sort of hard action movie that combined all my favorite things. Something that would be the love child of Sam Fuller and Edward Gorey. You know, I’ve had many thoughts since then. Oh, I could do this! Oh, I could do that! But it is my instinct to want to tell those stories.

Acknowledging the success of films like The Hunger Games (the number-one domestic earner two years running), Whedon said it’s still difficult to convince studios to make female-led films, though he cites Scarlett Johansson’s Lucy as a step in the right direction. “It’s a struggle,” he conceded. “You’ll always be able to rattle off the names of the female-driven genre films, and the rest are all male, and generally white men.”

And for all you Astonishing X-Men fans out there, Whedon also added to his previous statement that “most of the best characters in Marvel are owned by Fox.” A well-known X-Men fan, Whedon said “there really wasn’t a gender bias in the [X-Men] books,” and with the addition of Phoenix, “the most powerful person in the universe, everything was on the table. It was all multicultural and there was no real question of gender in the book.” He also mentions having a massive childhood crush on Kitty Pryde, which is something we both share.

Whedon does clarify that he doesn’t want to sound like he’s “just dissing on [his] tribe,” but that it’s ultimately all comes down to storytelling. If you want to read the full interview, head over to BuzzFeed!

( image via Gage Skidmore)

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Sam Maggs is a writer and televisioner, currently hailing from the Kingdom of the North (Toronto). Her first book, THE FANGIRL'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY will be out soon from Quirk Books. Sam’s parents saw Star Wars: A New Hope 24 times when it first came out, so none of this is really her fault.