Considering the gigantic success of The Avengers earlier this year, it should come as no surprise that Marvel would fall all over itself to bring back Joss Whedon to direct the sequel. And that's exactly what the studio did yesterday by signing an exclusive deal that means the filmmaker will return to not only write The Avengers 2, but direct it as well.
But they didn't stop there. During the company's earning's call on Tuesday, Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger also announced that Whedon will be involved in the creation of a proposed Marvel television show for ABC. Disney clearly understands the power of what they have in the billion dollar Avengers empire, but let's hope and pray they don't oversaturate it in their attempts to leverage the Avengers brand across the entire company.
Said Marvel in an official statement, "Joss Whedon has signed an exclusive deal with Marvel Studios for film and television through the end of June 2015. As part of that deal, Whedon will write and direct Marvel's The Avengers 2 as well as help develop a new live action series for Marvel Television at ABC. He will also contribute creatively to the next phase of Marvel’s cinematic universe."
The Avengers grossed a whopping $1.46 billion in box office receipts worldwide, and Disney rightly attributes the film's success to Whedon's involvement. His filmmaking skills - both writing and directing - coupled with his knowledge of the Marvel superhero characters allowed Whedon create a brilliant climax to what Marvel had been building towards for years. And now they've decided to heap upon him bags and bags of money to keep the Marvel train rolling.
The move into the TV world is interesting however. Sounds like Marvel is ramping up for a much broader Marvel universe than we even expected. One that moves into the television side. It's not a stretch to bring Whedon in to the TV realm however, as he is best known as the creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the short-lived sci-fi themed Firefly series'. Though his Firefly had a mixed track record, Whedon's penchant for creating a rabid following can't be denied.
Though an exact release date for The Avengers sequel was not announced in the Disney statement, 2015 (summer, of course) seems the most likely target.
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