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Episode 385: Nerdist Podcast
Joss Whedon
Nerdist PodcastNerdist Podcast

Nerdist Podcast: Joss Whedon

Nerd hero Joss Whedon is finally on the podcast! Chris, Matt, and Jonah invade his home to talk about how he casts for his characters, coming up with new ideas, and the days when he and Chris lived across the street from each other!

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  1. Andrew says:

    I remember he mentions Amy Acker in this episode and I want to quote it for an article I am writing. Can someone give me the timestamp for the mention? Thanks in advance.

  2. Bubbowrap says:

    I liked Joss Whedon before, but after this interview, I’m about to go on a Whedon Binge. I’m going to force myself to finish Buffy and Angel and watch every movie of his that I haven’t seen (which is maybe like two). I can’t believe he worked on so many things that I loved growing up, and I love that he gets some anxiety when working with people. He feels human unlike so many others.

    Thanks Nerdist, I’m going to make an account at some point.

  3. Gina A Smith says:

    I got so much Chick wood when I saw this…It just got bigger when I listened to it….This is perfection!

  4. omodie says:

    This was great! I loved the existential jokes.

  5. Beast! says:

    @Chris Miray – after hearing Joss ‘fess up to which celebs he’s geeked out over meeting, is it wrong that I now am dying to have Jonathan Banks cast as the voice of Ultron…?

    Thanks, boys. As the great Nick Lowe is wont to say, “Another triumph!”

  6. JT Solace says:

    1. Anyone else want to hear about 110% Chris as snazzy death? Litrally LMAO, I’m differently abeled now. Get the snazzy parking space and everything.
    2. “I don’t collect comics, I read them.” has to be the new motto for the post geekers.

  7. Nathan says:

    @slurp: “Waking Sleeping Beauty”

  8. slurp says:

    What’s the name of the documentary that was mentioned approximately 30:53 into the podcast? I couldn’t make out the name.

  9. chris hardwick says:

    @Tausif: Katie and Chloe were there as well as Joss’s kids.

  10. Rob S. says:

    Was that Cleo or Katy talking? Maybe the new Royal Baby will be named Ralph.

  11. Leon says:

    Hey guys, I’m in Montreal and really want to check out the live podcast, but the booking office knows nothing about it. How do I get a ticket?

    Also Joss was his usual amazing self. The passion that guy brings to what he creates is inspiring.

  12. Kris says:

    Just went I didn’t think Joss Whedon couldn’t be any more awesome he mentions his love for the late great Howard Ashman.

  13. Tausif Khan says:

    Chris, who are the other people in the background in the interview? (I don’t mean Matt and Jonah)

  14. Arabrabbra says:

    Oh hahaha that was a joke, I get how jokes work! Glad I listened to this one

  15. David says:

    Hey, if you want really good Chocolate in Montreal, go to a

    There’s one across from the St. Denis theatre. Some of the best chocolate I’ve ever had.

    And honestly, if you’re going to Montreal, it may be a good time to cheat on being a vegetarian for some Montreal Smoked meat. Schwartz’s is amazing.

  16. Arabrabbra says:

    I was so SUPER excited to listen to this, but it looks like he tells the whole Avengers Two movie in the podcast! As someone who doesnt even watch movie trailers because they spoil the whole thing, I will have to skip this podcast! Darn it Wheeeedonnnn!!!!!

  17. Nathan says:

    Link to the twilight zone episode for the curious:

  18. Here’s a bit of Toy Story knowledge for you kids, to go along with Chris’ comment of Disney hiring creative people and letting them be creative. That isn’t, in fact, what happened.

    I don’t remember the full story, but when Disney signed on to release the film, they also started to give notes on how they think the story and film should go. They just noted it to death, saying things like “Woddy should be this way!” “Do this here!” and “Make this do that!” Since the Pixar gang (mainly John Lasseter, Pete Docter, Andrew Stanton, and Joe Ranft) were so green about making their own pictures, they listened to every note, thinking “Well of course they know what they’re talking about! They have over 65 years of experience when it comes to making movies!”

    After months of this, Pixar the first half of the movie to Disney, and it’s a disaster. Woody is unlikeable, it isn’t funny, and it’s just ten-kinds of awful. The Disney executives leave, and Peter Schneider, head if Disney Animation, wants the production shut down. Jeffery Katzenberg asked his colleague, Thomas Schumacher, what happened. “It’s not their movie anymore,” replied Schumacher.

    What’s Disney’s reaction to this? They want to give more notes! They tell John “Fire everyone on your staff and move the production to LA so we can tell you how to do this. You obviously have no idea what you’re doing.” Since they had just hired animators, and were about to finish training them, John said “No.”

    “Then you don’t make your movie,” said Disney.

    “Okay, look, we’ll shut down production and work on the script,” said John. “We’ll come back in two weeks and show you what we have. If you like it, we get to do it on our own. If not, we do it with you.” (This has suddenly become a story, hasn’t it?)

    They shut down production, and the head writers went of, after bringing in Joss I believe, sat in that warehouse and pounded that story out. They did nothing all day and night but pitch things, write, and draw. They threw out everything Disney told them to do, put ideas back in that had been jettisoned out of the film, and in two weeks, returned to Disney with a completed script and storyboards. The improvement was so great that one of the executives (it feels like something Katzenberg would say) exclaimed “What did you guys do?! Take Funny Pills?!” Needles to say, Disney loved it and production went off without another word.

    Because of this, too this day, Pixar treats Disney’s notes with an air of “Thanks for your input, but no,” and they just treat it as another note. And when Disney does give a good note, they usually look at it and say “You’re right about this, but it isn’t because of this. Really, it’s because if this.”

    I’m sure I messed up somewhere, but this is how I remember it being discribed by on the Filmmakers Reflect featurette on the DVD.

  19. JetpackBlues says:

    @Wildride: Everybody wants to be a Steve, except me.

  20. Wildride says:

    Playing “Bears” involves spending a lot of time debating the relative benefits of the softness of bed and the correct serving temperature of porridge.

  21. leafonthewind says:

    I had to control my breathing in my office when I saw that Joss was on the podcast! Great episode!

  22. Wildride says:

    “I’m a Tony.”
    “I’m a Steve.”
    “I’m a Tony that kinda wants to be a Steve.”
    “Nobody want be Bruce?!? Hulk sad!”

  23. Bridget says:

    This had me in tears, both from laughter and unabashed heartfelt awe. I love Joss Whedon so much. Absolutely the best.

  24. James McGill says:


    I can’t stop. I blame you for this Hardwick.


  25. @Chris: I think it actually justifies the podcast as a whole. Like, you could just end it with this and I wouldn’t blame you. @3ToF

  26. Bradford Richardson says:

    Awe-some! The Joss Whedon NERDIST Podcast was the a spectacularly fun way to play hooky from that rewrite I’m supposed to be working on! And now that we’re all BEST friends… hey, wait…

  27. Leah says:

    I have a problem in that I apparently harbor such geek love for Joss that I teared up a bit when I saw that the podcast was up.

    And – AND! this was after all of the epic information that came out of SDCC. Knowing that Joss was just sitting on all of that information is crazy to me.

    Guys actual tears.

    • ericmci says:

      I think the world should take a vote on the word epic.
      Like shouting bomb on a plane or fire in a movie theater.
      Should saying “epic” be considered a crime at this point?

  28. ericmci says:

    I am willing to bet that the show Joss wouldn’t name that he decided he couldn’t watch anymore b/c the characters dialogue became too convenient was – The West Wing.
    That- fuc*king show.

    Also- personally- I just don’t get rabid love for musical theater.
    If you hate predictable patterns then that – to me- is the worst offender.

  29. jgarfink says:

    I want him to be my best friend. Also, I like the idea that Disney works like an office. “Hey, we’re pulling you off the Aladdin account – these Toy Story guys could be a winner!”

  30. chris hardwick says:

    @3toF: the creation of your amazing post above could have almost justified this podcast by itself

  31. Three Toes of Fury says:

    Woah!!!! What an amazing “get”! I also cant believe he revealed as many tidbits about Avengers 2 as he did!!! Here’s some of the ones that caught me most off guard (spoilers!):

    * While Thanos and Ultron will be the bad guys, we’ll find out during the 2nd half of the film that they are more henchman to the true villian of the film…Doctor Horrible (Neil Patrick Harris confirmed via twitter that he’ll be in Avengers 2 and 3 (allegedly)).

    * Joss confirmed that he’s going to continue the tradition of having a new actor play The Hulk in every movie. Therefore Ruffalo is out. The Hulk will be played by the actor we’ve all been waiting for…Carrot Top.

    * Joss is indeed “going darker” with this pic…he will reveal in the 3rd act that Hawkeye and Black Widow are actually siblings..twins..which were separated at birth by Nic Fury to protect them (a-la-star wars). This will be understandably awkward news after their steamy love scene in act 1.

    * Of course there will be comedy mixed within…looking forward to the scene where Thor and Loki are forced to compete in a breakdancing the death…with the original Turbo and Ozone from ‘Breakin’.

    * Joss is trying to infuse some earth awareness messages to the movie…one message is regarding the importance of recycling. Therefore Robert Downey Jr will return with newly constructed suits…but constructed of different material…enter Aluminum Man. (which, as it turns out, is a terrible idea…aluminum isnt very protective…Downey is killed in the opening 15 min).

    * The film events take place starting the day after the events of Avengers. The pre-credit opening shows all the avengers looking misrable sitting on their respective toilets….schwarma poisoning.

    * Nick Fury faces his own family demons when he finds out that his great great great grandfather was involved in the slave trade on a plantation named “Candy Land”.

    * Captain America finally figures out modern technology which ultimately leads to his demise….Thanos easily decapitates him when he is giggling uncontrollably watching a youtube video of a waterskiing squirrel.

    * post credits scene: the surviving Avengers show up at San Diego Comicon in costume (everyone assumes that they are just great cosplayers). They walk up to the “big DC” announcement pannel. When DC reveals “Batman and Superman will team up in our next film”, they all laugh hysterically and proceed to say mockingly, in their best bale-batman voices, “cough cough deperate! cough cough good luck!”

    Peace & With my Freeze Ray I will Stop…….the pain.


    PS: Seriously…if Joss reads this….pretty pretty please try and do a Dr Horrible sequel some day….its one of my favorite things in the last decade!!!

  32. Kristoffer says:

    this. this is going to be legen-waitforit-dairy.

  33. Hannah says:

    I got the biggest smile when I saw this. It’s like you guys take all of my nerdy dreams and spew them out onto this website. Thank you for doing all that you do! -Hannah (:

  34. scottH says:

    Scoobie gang unite!!