Archive for the ‘Crew’ Category

Zack Whedon Flips Star Wars and Serenity With Comic Book Resources

26 December 2011 Leave a comment


by Shaun Manning, Staff Writer

Wed, December 21st, 2011

For the next Free Comic Book DayDark Horse is giving readers a taste of two major licenses with its “Star Wars/Serenity” flipbook. Both stories are written by “Dr. Horrible” and “Terminator” writer Zack Whedon (whose brother Joss created “Firefly”/”Serenity”), with the “Star Wars” tale illustrated by Davidé Fabbri and the “Serenity” story featuring art by Fabio Moon. Comic Book Resources spoke exclusively with Whedon about the free comic, his fannish relationship with “StarWars,” and how Mal Reynolds and Han Solo might get along.

After playing around in the “Terminator” universe where he introduced new elements to the original moviestoryline, Whedon now has the chance to write another, perhaps even more famous, set of iconic characters in Han Solo and Chewbacca. “There is definitely something scary about it,” the writer told CBR. “These two characters are loved by, well, everyone. So you don’t want to screw it up. I care about these guys a lot, so that makes it easier. I can be a good gauge for what a fan would like and dislike since I am one myself.”

Whedon said that up to now, his “Star Wars” fandom has followed a familiar path. “It’s pretty much the same as most people my age (32), which is to say that I grew up watching these movies. I had all the toys, I dreamed of being Luke Skywalker, I’d have lightsaber battles with discarded wrapping paper tubes, I’d reenact over and over the moment where Han runs after the Stormtroopers firing his blaster and screaming and then turns around and runs back screaming. On cold winter nights I’d cut open the bellies of Tauntauns and stuff my friends inside,” Whedon said. He added that he’s engaging in some not-atypical “Star Wars” obsessiveness. “In all seriousness, a few years ago, outraged that I couldn’t get the original trilogy sans CG but with good sound, I bought a laserdisc player and the laserdiscs which have THX sound but no CG. Ultimately, the flipping required in laserdisc viewing takes more away from the experience than Han shooting first, so I gave in and bought the blu-rays. I know, I’m weak.”

With the vast canvas of the “Star Wars” universe, which Dark Horse has had a large hand in expanding, CBR asked Whedon why he honed in on Han and Chewie for his story and why he chose this moment in their careers. “Well, this is before they met Luke and Obi-Wan, which is when their life took a turn for the epic/problematic/Jedi-heavy,” he said. “They’re still small time smugglers just trying to get by at this point. I didn’t want to mess with any of the major storylines. I just wanted to write about these guys bumming around the galaxy. It’s a light story, so I didn’t want them dealing with heavy subjects like rebellion, fate and absentee fathers.”

Whedon went on to say that the Free Comic Book Day tale is “sort of a day in the life of these guys who are always on the wrong end of every deal, which means staring down the barrel of a gun much of the time.” “It’s about how they work together, how they don’t, how they talk to each other after being alone together on a spaceship for days on end,” he said.

“Serenity” has some affinities with “Star Wars,” but Whedon doesn’t see Han Solo and Mal Reynolds getting along. “I think if they could get past their initial misgivings — Mal with Han’s shifty, smooth-talking nature; Han with Mal’s stoic soldier routine — they’d have a lot to talk about. But I think it’s more likely they’d butt heads, possibly literally,” said the writer.

Whedon is working with long-time “Star Wars” artist Davidé Fabbri for the Han and Chewbacca story while Fabio Moon provides the visuals for the “Serenity” tale. The writer said he did not know which artists would bring his stories to life while he was writing them, but he has “seen the pages for both and they’re astonishing.” “They bring so much life to the pages and fill in millions of details that I could never think of,” Whedon added. “They’ve both done some fantastic character design work in these stories as well. I’m very excited about the art.”

Whedon has told a few “Serenity” stories in comics before, notably “The Shepherd’s Tale” graphic novel, revealing Shepherd Book’s checkered past, and a short for DH:HD on the “USA Today” web site. For the Free Comic Book Day Story, Whedon wanted a unified feeling with the “Star Wars” story on the other side of the flipbook. “I wanted to put Han and Mal in similar situations and through their reactions, see how they are different and how they are the same,” he said. “The one thing that these two ‘loners’ are never without is their loyal friends, so that’s part of it. I really focus on Mal but you get a taste of some other folks. [There’s] not as much Jayne as I would like, but there’s only so much you can do in ten pages.”

Having tackled both very short stories and longer works like ‘The Shepherd’s Tale,’ CBR asked Whedon about the fun or challenges of the very-short format. “The challenge with a short story like this is obviously real estate. You don’t have a lot of panels to tell your story,” the writer said. “That was part of my decision to have these be stand-alone stories that don’t effect the greater mythology of these characters. I didn’t want to do a disservice to a larger, course-changing story by cramming it into ten pages. I just wanted to have fun with these characters and shine a light on some of their unique qualities.”

As to whether readers will see more “Serenity” from Whedon in 2012, the writer said that he’d like to tell the story of “where they headed after the movie.”

“I’m having some pre-pre-pre-preliminary discussions with Dark Horse about that.”

“Star Wars/Serenity” arrives on Free Comic Book Day, May 5, 2012.

Original Interview at Comic Book Resources

Nerdist Writers’ Panel #17 with Zack Whedon

14 December 2011 Leave a comment

Nerdist Writers Panel #17: ZackWhedon, Jeremy Carver & John Rodgers

Zack Whedon (Fringe; Deadwood; Rubicon); Jeremy Carver (developer, Being Human); John Rogers (creator, Leverage). Recorded September 25, 2011

Listen to the panel at Nerdist

Lust for Love Kickstarter Project ft a Host of Whedony Actors

26 October 2011 Leave a comment

Lust for Love is a feature film project by a group of artists including Fran Kranz, Dichen Lachman, Enver Gjokaj, Felicia Day and Maurissa Tancharoen.  The Kickstarter fund for the project, which will film in December has already reached it’s goal of $70,000 but you can still donate to help make the film even better and receive a number of different rewards depending on how much you pledge.

For full details and to make your donation go to Kickstarter

Video For Ancestors – Jed Whedon and The Willing

20 September 2011 Leave a comment

Media Mike Interviews Maurissa Tancharoen

14 September 2011 Leave a comment

Interview with Maurissa Tancharoen Whedon

September 11, 2011 by Mike Gencarelli

Maurissa Tancharoen Whedon is best known for co-writing “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”. She also was a writer on “Dollhouse” and “Spartacus: Gods of the Arena”. Besides writing Maurissa is currently appearing in the web series “The Guild” and also just worked with her brother Kevin Tancharoen in “Mortal Kombat: Legacy”. Media Mikes had the privilege to chat with Maurissa on her various projects.

Mike Gencarelli: You have worked with your husband Jed Whedon on numerous projects, how is it always collaborating?
Maurissa Tancharoen Whedon: Fortunately it’s a very harmonious working relationship. We sort of balance each other out as far as our creative processes go. I tend to be very detail oriented and over think things at times. Jed is capable of thinking stuff up on the fly. He will often throw out some ideas and I will be the one to pick out which one works and then we massage it into something that we both feel comfortable with. It’s definitely a ying and yang situation. I’m glad it is because if it wasn’t we probably wouldn’t be working together. (Laughs)

MG: How do you feel about writing for such projects ranging from “Dollhouse” to “Spartacus: Gods of the Arena”?

MTW: We are very grateful to have the chance to work on all these great shows. Me personally, when Istarted to get into writing seriously I always imagined myself writing on “Sex in the City” or a CW show. I never thought I would be pulled into the sci-fi/fantasy genre. I love it and am happy that I have discovered it. Of course having Jed who has always liked those things worked out great. Going from “Dollhouse” to “Spartacus” is something I like because it allows us to change things up and we never get bored.

MG: What was it like working with your brother, Kevin Tancharoen, on “Mortal Kombat: Legacy”?
MTW: He is my younger brother but I have always looked up to him. He has just been incredible since he was born. I don’t understand. (Laughs) When we were kids he was always coming up to me wanting to show me what he had done on his computer. He hates when I talk about him being the little brother. Just seeing him on his set with the cast and crew and directing something that he also wrote was great. I was just happy to be a part of it. I would have been there bringing him his water just to get to see him working. Getting to work with him professionally was a great experience. That was the first time he directed me or told me what to do…in front of other people. (Laughs) I was happy to be in it saying lines my brother wrote.

MG: Can you tell us about your work on this season of “The Guild”?
MTW: I have been a fan of the show since season one. I had heard about it when we were looking at casting Felicia Day to play the Penny character for “Dr.Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”. Joss had worked with her on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and said she would be great and the part and that we should watch her series “The Guild”.  I checked out the show and fell in love with it. The characters and cast are just great. When she asked me this year if I would like to play a part on the series I couldn’t believe it. I was over the moon! This season is really great and it’s much bigger than anything in the past. I feel all the cast are just shining. I can’t wait for everyone to see what happens.

MG: Out of all the songs on “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog”, what is your favorite?
MTW: That’s hard. I really love “Everything You Ever”. That song gives me the chills. We actually recently watched on tape for a stage production done during Comic-Con for “Dr.Horrible”. Seeing people take something we had done and interpret it themselves and then adapt it to stage was very cool. The way they did the last song “Everything You Ever” was really great. It warms my heart that people love that project so much. It’s very exciting that it’s still alive years later.

MG: I love your song with Jed called “Remains”, any plans to release more music?
MTW: Yes in fact. We have been working on an album which has been really cool. I am not exactly sure as to when it’s going to be done but I think we might do a five song EP initially. We currently have three songs done and we are working on two more. I don’t know what’s going to become of it but we are just going to do it! “Remains” was a song Jed and I did strictly just for “Dollhouse”. We had no idea people would love it so much. A friend of ours came to us wanting to direct a video for the song. We basically shot it on the fly and people really responded well to it. The song has been out for two years but some people are just now discovering it which is great.

MG: Any top secret information you would like to leak to
MTW: (Laughs) “The Avengers” is going to be a really cool movie! I really feel it’s going to knock people’s socks off. We have been privy to a lot of the stuff going on with the film and from what I hear it’s going really smooth and is going to be great.

Original Interview at Media Mikes

MTV Interview Shawna Trpcic

6 July 2011 1 comment

Interview: Shawna Trpcic Helps Torchwood, Firefly, and Dr. Horrible Get Dressed

Posted 7/1/11 by Alex Zalben

A few weeks ago, Starz, the network that’s launching a brand new series of Torchwood, sent out a press release trumpeting the new coat John Barrowman would be wearing on screen. Between releases trumpeting new trailers, online games, and more, it stuck out to your faithful garment-challenged MTV Geek writer, but we put up a – some might say snarky – post, all the same. And then almost immediately, were corrected about certain details over Twitter by the designer of the coat, Shawna Trpcic.

Turns out that I’m the ignoramus here, and Trpcic gracefully agreed to an interview to chat more about why the changes in the coat were important. It also turns out that Trpcic is the costume designer behind pretty much all of your favorite geek shows, from the dusty future of Firefly, to the superheroes of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-Long Blog. And now, Trpcic is creating a New World with Captain Jack, Gwen Cooper, and some mystery enemies called “The Soulless.” We chatted with Trpcic about all of that, and also got some info on Joss Whedon’s long waiting in the wings feature, Cabin in the Woods:

MTV Geek: Let’s talk about Torchwood, which you’re working on right now… There’s a lot of new characters, of course, but you do have some pre-existing characters: Captain Jack, Gwen Cooper, etc… What’s it like trying to adapt another designer’s looks to American TV?

Shawna Trpcic: I just updated them – slimmed them down and accentuated their bodies. Actors work really hard at keeping in shape, why hide it! I love the human figure, and love to show it off.

Geek: I’ll be totally honest, I’m pretty ignorant about the intricacies of costume design, but Starz was clearly pretty excited about the new look for Captain Jack’s coat. Other than keeping John Barrowman cooler with lighter materials, what’s different?

ST: I took about two feet of fullness out of the coat… I found his torso, and then swept the “skirt” of the coat out to give it that romantic cape like feel.

Geek: You’ve had a lot of long coats in your work, from Torchwood, to Angel, to Firefly, of course – why are long coats so cool?

ST: I guess it’s the cape like feeling you get from them – like making Batman more accessible to modern fans!

Geek: Ha! Okay… This may continue to paint me as “dumb guy who doesn’t know enough about costume design,” but what’s different in designing something set in the modern world like Torchwood, versus, say, some of the more scifi/fantasy focused series you’ve worked on in the past?

ST: With shows like Firefly there is no established look – you invent the world, then create within it. I would do extensive research “boards,” photos of what I was thinking – and present them to Tim Minear and Joss Whedon to get inside their heads; to make sure I was picturing what they were.

Geek: So then what was your idea going into Torchwood? Everybody seems pretty natural, but other than the previous Torchwood characters, were there any looks you were going for? Lauren Ambrose’s in particular, seems pretty distinctive.

ST: Again I just love the human figure. I love to show off the strength of the man behind the suit, the sensuality of the woman, their power. So I work very hard to develop their best qualities and show them off!

Geek: Without spoiling anything – since most people haven’t seen the series yet – can you talk about the Soulless a bit? Was that something you worked on? And if so, was the look of the mask dictated in the script, or did you bring a bit of the look there?

ST: I did many sketches to “sell” the look to Russell T. Davies… He approved two, and Props and I worked them up, and one was chosen!

Geek: It’s always fun to see the (previously) immortal Captain Jack in other time periods… Are we going to get to see any of that in this new series? Any time period you lobbied for?

ST: Yes! You get a look at him in another time period… It was dictated by Russell and Jane [Espenson].

Geek: Anything particularly crazy coming up in the show, costume-wise?

ST: The period episode, and other locations that involved specialty costumes.

Geek: Okay, that’s pretty spoiler free… Let’s talk about some of your previous work. First of all, you’ve stuck pretty much to the geek side of things. Was that something you fell into, or by design?

ST: I fell into it, I suppose, because my portfolio was full of things I love to do; and fantasy and comic and very much a part of my life!

Geek: Firefly seems like it was your big break… You had been working for a while before that, but there, you really created the look of a world. What was that like?

ST: I started under designer Jill Ohanessian on the pilot, and then got to take over when she left to design Six feet Under. It was an amazing opportunity – a new world every eight days. There’s nothing like it… It was an amazing time.

Geek: The great thing about the look in Firefly is that it’s a mish-mash of cultures and time periods, but feels consistent… That must have been tricky, to walk that line properly. What were you main influences?

ST: China and US as the only two superpowers to survive the death of Earth, and their influence on the rest of the world cultures as they settle the New Worlds.

Geek: Clearly, the costume design on Firefly – possibly more than any other show I’ve seen recently – was very visible, and has stuck around far longer than the shows length. What’s your reaction when you walk around and see a band of Browncoats, or someone in a Jayne hat?

ST: I squeal with joy every time I see a Firefly costume at Comic Con! And now Dr. Horrible costumes are everywhere…

Geek: You were hands on with a lot of Inara’s costumes, I think? Is that correct? And if so, do you have a favorite?

ST: I designed a new dress every eight days… I loved them all and she was so much fun to dress! I loved redesigning my wedding dress for the “Shindig” episode.

Geek: Moving on to Angel, you created the look for Illyria… What was the thought process that went into changing Amy Acker from mousy-girl, to unstoppable elder god?

ST: Joss gave me the instruction of “a bio suit,” something to keep her alive. So I studied anatomy books, and gathered fabric samples that looked organic – life sustainable.

Geek: Let’s talk about the last episode of Angel… Most of the characters’ looks had been well established by that point, but going into the last episode, is there any thought to, “Okay, this HAS to be even more iconic than usual?”

ST: The last season was all new for all of them, as they now worked for a law firm instead of privately. So ALL of the characters had been re designed! And we didn’t know it was our last going into the season…

Geek: In general, when you’re working on an actiony show, how many versions of a costume do you need to make? I imagine that they get ripped pretty easily.

ST: Doubles, triples… Depends on bullet hits, types of stunts, etc. We made six Captain Jack coats and three Mal coats.

Geek: That’s about five more coats than I own… Let’s talk about Dr. Horrible, which has also had a huge life beyond its initial run time. What was it like moving over to a more four color superhero type universe?

ST: No budget and eight days to shoot; no time to think… Just create and have fun!

Geek: There’s something – and I mean this is a good way – very “budget” looking about Dr. Horrible and Captain Hammer’s costumes, in particular. What was the thought process there?

ST: Joss want to represent the Comic Con folks, his fans, who support and influence him. They create amazing replicas, and we are one of them!

Geek: I know the script is being worked on for the sequel… Have they chatted with you about any costumes? Or is that too far off?

ST: Joss is on the Avengers! ‘Nuff said.

Geek: Now, for Dollhouse, again, you had a very clean, simple look for the Dolls. Going in, what was the idea there?

ST: Asian Spa, retreat, something that is supposed to be safe… But is terribly wrong.

Geek: Particularly with Echo wearing different clothing every single episode (mostly), is that fun for a costume designer? Or is it more like, “Oh my god, can you please just let her wear the same thing two episodes in a row?”

ST: No I loved the challenge! Most shows, you create a closet for each character. With Dollhouse every eight days, like Firefly, it was a new world.

Geek: And there were occasionally some… Racy costumes for that show, by necessity. Did you ever get anything that someone just flat out refused to wear?

ST: Never. I knew the ladies, and respected them all very much. We had conversations before having fittings, so all was understood way before show time.

Geek: Then, of course, there’s the post-apocalypse of Epitaph… What was it like creating the look for that?

ST: I grew up loving Mad Max soooo – YAY!!! Mad Max, meets Terminator, meets endless imagination!

Geek: There’s also Cabin in the Woods… Ummm… Any chance we’re ever going to get to see that? Any hints on what we might see if we do?

ST: I think next year! There are awesome creations from a team that just would not quit. We used everything we had on that one… It was a challenge, and I think it will be great. I have not seen a cut yet.

Geek: Besides Torchwood, what else is coming up for you?

ST: Summer vacation with the kids right now… And looking for something to keep me busy until we hear if Torchwood gets picked up.

Original Interview at MTV

Maurissa Tancharoen Joins The Guild

27 April 2011 Leave a comment

Maurissa TancharoenMaurissa Tancharoen has joined the cast of The Guild for the new season which is currently being filmed. She recently tweeted the following:

Had so much fin @theguild read thru last night. I’m beyond happy I get to be a part of this season. @feliciaday + cast + crew rocks.

Source: @MoTancharoen

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