Hellmouth reopens

By Susannah Radford

It’s like fish without chips but Warner Bros. Pictures and Atlas Entertainment have done the unthinkable.  The announcement that Buffy the Vampire Slayer would be relaunched as a film without the involvement of creator Joss Whedon has been met with shock by fans throughout the world.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer first burst onto the silver screen in 1992.  Starring Kirsty Swanson and Luke Perry, the film bombed.  It was the TV series which began screening in 1997 and starred Sarah Michelle Gellar and David Boreanaz that achieved global success and spawned the spin off series Angel.  The series ran for 145 episodes and lasted until 2003.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series. Source: Scorpions and Centaurs

Joss Whedon creator of the film and the TV series talked with his usual wit and humour to Kristin Dos Santos of E Online about his response to the film release.  “This is a sad, sad reflection on our times, when people must feed off the carcasses of beloved stories from their youths—just because they can’t think of an original idea of their own, like I did with my Avengers idea that I made up myself.”

I always hoped that Buffy would live on even after my death.  But, you know, AFTER.  I don’t love the idea of my creation in other hands, but I’m also well aware that many more hands than mine went into making that show what it was. And there is no legal grounds for doing anything other than sighing audibly. I can’t wish people who are passionate about my little myth ill. I can, however, take this time to announce that I’m making a Batman movie.  Because there’s a franchise that truly needs updating. So look for The Dark Knight Rises Way Earlier Than That Other One And Also More Cheaply And In Toronto, rebooting into a theater near you. 

Kristy Swanson, the original Buffy tells EW she is open to involvement.  “Let Buffy live.  Why not? If they wanted me to be a part of it, I think that would be fantastic and that it would be a blast.”

Closer to home, British fans express their feelings toward the news.  Ewa Hibbert from Edinburgh says “Gerrr Aaaargh!  I need a hug” [a reference to the closing screen credits of the TV show].  “No, no, not without Joss’ blessing and preferably with him writing and directing it.  I think the original cast memebers are probably a bit too old to play their original roles, but it would be nice in a nostalgic way for some of them to be involved.  In priniciple I’m not against a remake of the Buffy movie as it could be done better than the first time around, but I don’t think it’s a good idea to do this without Joss, our greatest living screen writer.”

Hibbert heaps further praise upon Whedon saying “he brings together wit, charm, warmth, honesty, acute observation, emotional depth, dramatic tension, and more wit.  It’s not often that I laugh out loud, clap my hands in delight and sob my eyes out at a TV show.  His dialogue and character development is dazzling in Buffy, and possibly even better in Firefly.”

She refers to Whedon’s ill fated show Firefly which was cancelled by Fox after only 14 episodes.  The fanbase complained leading to a movie version of the series called Firefly being produced.  The Buffy fan base is similar in its veneration of the series, so if the film is a hit, it is guaranteed success.