One of the most anticipated events of all of SXSW was undoubtedly the US premiere of Joss Whedon’s “Much Ado About Nothing”, the screening of which was immediately followed by an hour-long Q&A with the entire cast save for Sean Maher, Riki Lindhome, and Reed Diamond. The line for the screening was the festival’s longest (at least until “Spring Breakers” blew the roof off of the Paramount Theatre last night), and chairs had to be brought in to line the sides of the auditorium, accommodating as many audience members as possible. And it was all worth it: The movie is fantastic, perhaps the most accessible Shakespeare I’ve ever seen – and this ain’t my first Shakesprodeo (see what I did there?). The panel that followed was lively and filled with little nuggets of wit and wisdom. Below, we’ve shared our 10 favorite things that we learned from Whedon and his friends.
1. You Don’t Say No To Joss Whedon
Both Alexis Denisof and Nathan Fillion were nervous about tackling Shakespeare, but they both subscribe to the belief that if Joss Whedon asks you do something, you do it. Fillion even came close to dropping out completely until Whedon’s wise words kept him attached. When Whedon reached out to Nick Kocher and Brian McElhaney to inquire as to whether they would fly themselves out to work on his movie for very little pay, they didn’t even hesitate. As Kocher put it, “Of course we came out – what do you think we do all day?!”
2. Wanna Work With Joss Whedon? It Could Happen
Over and over, situations came up where Joss discovered someone and incorporated them into the Whedonverse. Danny Kaminsky was hired as Joss’ assistant for “The Avengers”, and they worked so well together that Danny ended up becoming the editor and co-producer of “Much Ado”, thus “winning the best lottery of all time” (Kaminsky’s words, though I share the sentiment). Similarly, Jillian Morgese, who makes her feature debut in the film, was discovered by Joss after working on “The Avengers” in a minor PA/Extra role. He was taken by her as she “ran around looking scared”, and found her particular brand of ingenue to be exactly right for Hero, so he asked her to audition. Kocher and McElhaney were cast because Whedon is a huge fan of their sketch comedy group BriTanicK. Now, with their foot in the door, all of these people are here to stay. Moregese even went so far as to say that they had all become like family, something none of them would have thought possible just a couple years ago. The cherry on top? Rather than have any old extras, Whedon specifically brought in film students to fill out the main party scene.
3. Skype Auditions Are Really A Thing!
Whedon’s hunch about Morgese was proved correct when she auditioned for him over Skype and immediately got the role, no in-person callback required.
Way way way more on Film.com! You should go there!
A group of New York & Los Angeles based Fangirls (and a couple boys) in their early twenties, who are and/or work with various professionals in the genre world, write about the things they love...and hate. Specializing in opinions, recommendations & commentary with some exclusive access thrown in, we're where to come to hear what the Fangirls really think.