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Joss Whedon's Quotes

Joss Whedon profile photo

Born: 1964-06-23
Profession: Writer
Nation: American
Biography of Joss Whedon

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I don't have a particular ambition in any medium. I just want to keep telling stories. If somebody pays me, also good.

Tags: Ambition, Good, Keep

I don't think I'm a celebrity. Maybe I'm a cult figure?

Tags: Celebrity, Figure, Maybe

I don't understand why or how anyone ever pulled off the whole idea of 'women are inferior.'

Tags: Understand, Why, Women

I don't want the giant ego. I don't want to become Kevin Costner, singing on the soundtrack to The Postman.

Tags: Become, Ego, Singing

I eat 'The Walking Dead' like its made of brains. Can't even watch the show, I love the book so much.

Tags: Book, Dead, Love

I get recognized just often enough to keep my ego bouncing along, but not so much that I can't go places.

Tags: Ego, Enough, Keep

I have an obligation to do press, but I don't have an obligation to stay out dancing until 3 A.M.

Tags: Dancing, Stay, Until

I love a straightforward character. I am the guy who loves Cyclops on the 'X-Men', because he is square.

Tags: Character, Guy, Love

I love all genres. The only thing I get stymied by is the Family Drama. I don't necessarily know how to approach that.

Tags: Drama, Family, Love

I love to write. I love it. I mean there's nothin in the world I like better, and that includes sex, probably because I'm so very bad at it.

Tags: Bad, Love, Sex

I never tire of the heroes that I knew growing up.

Tags: Growing, Heroes, Knew

I never wanted to take a job because I needed money, and I never have.

Tags: Job, Money, Wanted

I never write anything without humor, just because I like humor, but at the same time, it is a way for anything fantastical to become relatable.

Tags: Become, Humor, Time

I respect the rules of TV, the rules of keeping things commercial and interesting and pop-y and fun.

Tags: Fun, Respect, Rules

I still believe that even though 'The Empire Strikes Back' is better in innumerable ways than 'Star Wars,' 'Star Wars' wins.

Tags: Star, Though, Ways

I think 'Batman Begins' is certainly my favorite Batman movie I've seen.

Tags: Favorite, Movie, Seen

I think it's not inaccurate to say that I had a perfectly happy childhood during which I was very unhappy.

Tags: Childhood, Happy, Unhappy

I was raised by a hardcore feminist.

Tags: Feminist, Hardcore, Raised

I'm a science fiction geek from birth - that's just who I am.

Tags: Birth, Fiction, Science

I'm a very gentle man, not unlike Gandhi.

Tags: Gandhi, Gentle, Unlike

I'm not big on regret; I don't spend a lot of time on it.

Tags: Big, Regret, Time

I've been to two festivals in my life, and I've never been to Toronto. I haven't really been making festival movies. This is new territory for me.

Tags: Life, Making, Movies

I've never met a well-adjusted person. It's weird.

Tags: Met, Weird

If somebody is in a story, they need to be there for a reason, and not just to set up somebody else's story.

Tags: Else, Reason, Story

In TV, there's so much compromise, it does start to grate a bit. But if you're a writer or an actor, it really is the place to be.

Tags: Actor, Place, Start

It's not any huge secret that I'm an atheist.

Tags: Atheist, Huge, Secret
Much more quotes by Joss Whedon below the page.

Kristen Stewart is kind of captivating; she can just stare at stuff and it works because I still want to watch it.

Tags: She, Stuff, Works

My favorite part of Comic-Con? The groupies.

Tags: Favorite, Groupies

My life has included a study of Shakespeare and to me it's very natural, but I know that it's not always accessible to other people.

Tags: Life, Natural, Study

Never sit at a table you can't walk away from.

Tags: Away, Sit, Walk

Oddly enough, I never studied writing. I studied almost everything except writing.

Tags: Almost, Enough, Writing

Part of making TV is the process - you just have to churn it out.

Tags: Making, Process, Tv

Remember to always be yourself.

Tags: Remember, Yourself

Science fiction is like a blender - you can put in any historical experience and take influences from everything you see, read or experience.

Tags: Experience, Put, Science

The only way to real mature love is to get past the tropes of what we consider 'romance.'

Tags: Love, Past, Real

The secret to multitasking is that it isn't actually multitasking. It's just extreme focus and organization.

Tags: Actually, Focus, Secret

'The Sixth Sense' is fine the second time around, but honestly, the first time around, it's dazzling.

Tags: Second, Sense, Time

There are two things that interest me - and they're both power, ultimately. One is not having it and one is abusing it.

Tags: Both, Interest, Power

There's a lot of anger in the Twitter-verse, as I've discovered. But there's a lot of love.

Tags: Anger, Discovered, Love

There's not going to be a 'Buffy' season nine on television.

Tags: Nine, Season, Television

Those of us who write spend our entire lives in an endless English class.

Tags: English, Lives, Write

TV's like whitewater rafting: Without rocks, there wouldn't be rapids, and it wouldn't be as much fun.

Tags: Fun, Rocks, Tv

Twelve-year-old me wanted to do everything: act and sing and paint and dance.

Tags: Act, Dance, Wanted

Ultimately what I end up writing about is helplessness and the flipside of that, empowerment.

Tags: End, Ultimately, Writing

What I love most about icons is finding out what's behind them, exploring the price of their power.

Tags: Behind, Love, Power

When I was a kid, maybe 11, I remember saying, 'When I grow up I wanna have enough money to buy a really cool car, because I won't.'

Tags: Car, Cool, Money

When people say to me, 'Why are you so good at writing at women?' I say, 'Why isn't everybody?'

Tags: Good, Women, Writing

When you're making a film, you have an obligation to fill the frame with life.

Tags: Film, Life, Making

Who is to say who is the villain and who is the hero? Probably the dictionary.

Tags: Dictionary, Hero, Villain

Why anybody gets my sense of humor I never know, but I do know that when they do, I keep them as close as I possibly can.

Tags: Humor, Sense, Why

You can't be a storyteller and a speechwriter at the same time.

Tags: Time

You don't buy a Picasso because you love the frame.

Tags: Buy, Frame, Love

You know, the thing that I do to waste time is think of things I want to make. That's how my mind is employed.

Tags: Mind, Time, Waste

As far as I am concerned, the first episode of Buffy was the beginning of my career. It was the first time I told a story from start to finish the way I wanted.

Tags: Career, Time, Wanted

I think everyone who makes movies should be forced to do television. Because you have to finish. You have to get it done, and there are a lot of decisions made just for the sake of making decisions. You do something because it's efficient and because it gets the story told and it connects to the audience.

Tags: Decisions, Done, Movies

The two things that matter the most to me: emotional resonance and rocket launchers. Party of Five, a brilliant show, and often made me cry uncontrollably, suffered ultimately from a lack of rocket launchers.

Tags: Emotional, Matter, Often

When I created Buffy, I wanted to create a female icon, but I also wanted to be very careful to surround her with men that not only have no problem with the idea of a female leader, but were in fact engaged and even attracted to the idea.

Tags: Leader, Men, Problem

An audience who watches my shows knows who I am, knows that right when they think I'm going to make a joke, I'm going to blow something up, or during the worst peril, I'm going to have someone give someone a kiss - it's just going to happen.

Tags: Give, Happen, Someone

Every time you work on a project, it's a little vacation from the project you're working on the other 23 hours. That's the thing - it replenishes you to do something else.

Tags: Time, Work, Working

Everybody who labels themselves a 'nerd' isn't some giant person locked in a cubbyhole who's never seen the opposite sex. Especially with the way the Internet is now, I think that definition is getting a little more diffuse.

Tags: Getting, Sex, Themselves

Everything I write tends to turn into a superhero team, even if I didn't mean for it to. I always start off wanting to be solitary, because a) it's simpler, and b) that isolation is something that I relate to as a storyteller. And then no matter what, I always end up with a team.

Tags: End, Mean, Team

I always enjoy conversation more if there is some substance to it - which is a just incredibly hilarious thing for me to say because for many, many years I was the guy whose only contribution to any conversation was, 'There was a funny 'Simpson's' joke about that.'

Tags: Enjoy, Funny, Joke

I am not a fan of referencing your own work when it's in a different universe than what you're doing. That, to me, is a wink at the audience, and winking isn't actually cool when you're not, like, 10.

Tags: Cool, Universe, Work

I designed 'Buffy' to be an icon, to be an emotional experience, to be loved in a way that other shows can't be loved. Because it's about adolescence, which is the most important thing people go through in their development, becoming an adult.

Tags: Emotional, Experience, Loved

I did my English A level in England, and we studied Shakespeare. I had great, great high school teachers, and we parsed the text within an inch of its life.

Tags: Great, Life, School

I didn't watch a lot of American television growing up. I just liked to read a lot and watch movies - movies, movies, and more movies. My family used to make fun of me because I'd like every movie I saw.

Tags: Family, Fun, Movies

I do listen to music. Movie scores, exclusively, because it's all about mood and nonspecificity. I love the way modern movie scoring is all about nonspecificity. You know, if I shuffled the tracks from 'Inception,' I challenge you to tell me which is which.

Tags: Challenge, Love, Music

I don't know a lot of show runners. I mean I met a lot of them in picket lines. I'm not part of a, like, secret society or pickup basketball game. As far as I'm concerned, pick-up basketball games are secret societies. They confuse me. I've never been a networker or I've never been very social.

Tags: Game, Mean, Society

I don't write just to be clever. But sometimes I do. And if you don't have an understanding of the language, then the way in which it's bent doesn't actually register. It's the old you-gotta-paint-like-them-before-you-can-paint-like-you thing.

Tags: Old, Sometimes, Write

I find that when you read a script, or rewrite something, or look at something that's been gone over, you can tell, like rings on a tree, by how bad it is, how long it's been in development.

Tags: Bad, Read, Tell

I had older brothers, and I don't think there's anything worse than an older brother. They pretty much told me the end of everything they got to see before I did.

Tags: Brother, End, Pretty

I tend to tell stories that have a lot of momentum; it's not like 'and then months later...' I like things where the momentum of one action rolls into the next one so everything is the sum of that.

Tags: Action, Next, Tell

I think it's always important for academics to study popular culture, even if the thing they are studying is idiotic. If it's successful or made a dent in culture, then it is worthy of study to find out why.

Tags: Study, Successful, Why

I think there's a possibility that comic book movies are getting a tiny bit better on the one hand because they're no longer made by executives, who are, you know, ninety-year-old bald tailors with cigars, going, 'The kids love this!'

Tags: Book, Love, Movies

I think to an extent every human being needs to be redeemed somewhat or at least needs to look at themselves and say, 'I've made mistakes, I'm off course, I need to change.' Which is probably the hardest thing for a human being to do, and maybe that's why it interests me so.

Tags: Change, Human, Mistakes

I used to write chronologically when I started, from beginning to end. Eventually I went, 'That's absurd; my heart is in this one scene, therefore I must follow it.'

Tags: End, Heart, Write

I was not popular in school, and I was definitely not a ladies' man. And I had a very painful adolescence, because it was all very strange to me. It wasn't like I got beat up, but the humiliation and isolation, and the existential 'God, I exist, and nobody cares' of being a teenager were extremely pronounced for me.

Tags: God, School, Strange

I would love to give you a more in-depth coherent explanation of my view of the soul, and if I had one I would. The soul and my concept of it are as ephemeral as anybody's, and possibly more so.

Tags: Give, Love, Soul

I'm never interested in movies where you don't care about the people you're watching, and that's my biggest quibble about horror, that kids have gotten stupider and stupider.

Tags: Care, Kids, Movies

I've seen plenty of films where the projector broke. The problems that we have in the digital age are exactly the same as we had. Instead of, 'There's a hair in the gate,' it's, 'The computer ate the footage.' There will always be things like that going on. Nothing is perfect.

Tags: Age, Perfect, Problems

If you try to multitask in the classic sense of doing two things at once, what you end up doing is quasi-tasking. It's like being with children. You have to give it your full attention for however much time you have, and then you have to give something else your full attention.

Tags: Children, End, Time

It's only recently women got to be action heroes on TV. Progress is slow, and often non-existent. There's plenty of cool comics with female characters... But all it takes is one Catwoman to set the cause back a decade.

Tags: Cool, Often, Women

Limitations are something that I latch onto - like working in genre, or if you're writing TV, there are act breaks, there's a length of time it's supposed to be. The restrictions of budget and sets can be really useful. When you can have everything, it's very hard to make things feel real and lived in.

Tags: Real, Time, Writing

Making 'The Avengers' was very important to me, but it was also extremely arduous. I missed my friends and I missed my home, so I decided to throw them all on camera, which is the only way I seem to know to relate to people.

Tags: Friends, Home, Making

People always say I write a lot of pop culture references. Can somebody please count the pop culture references in 'Firefly?' Because I don't know how to put this to you, but there was one. I referenced The Beatles in the pilot.

Tags: Culture, Put, Write

People used to laugh that academics would study Disney movies. There's nothing more important for academics to study, because they shape the minds of our children possibly more than any single thing.

Tags: Children, Movies, Single

Sarah Michelle Gellar's made some really good choices. She's had some bad breaks. She goes with the independent, interesting young filmmakers and then they get slammed, like 'Southland Tales.' I'm proud of what she's trying to do. It's hard.

Tags: Bad, Good, Hard

That title, is one of the things I fought for. A lot of people said 'But it's stupid, and it's the title of a comedy movie, and people won't take it seriously,' and I'm sure there are some people who still don't. But for the most part, people do see that we really have a quality show.

Tags: Said, Show, Stupid

'The Dark Knight,' for me, has the same problem that every other 'Batman' movie has. It's not about Batman. I think Heath Ledger is just phenomenal and the character of the Joker is beautifully written. He has a particular philosophy that he carries throughout the movie. He has one of the best bad guy schemes.

Tags: Bad, Best, Character

The misogyny that is in every culture is not a true part of the human condition. It is life out of balance, and that imbalance is sucking something out of the soul of every man and woman who's confronted with it.

Tags: Life, True, Woman

The networks have a particular agenda, a particular model and structure. It doesn't have anything to do with content. This is not a dis on them - they are a business model, run by business people.

Tags: Business, Content, Run

The way a musical can make us feel is unlike anything else, in song and particularly in dance. I think people fly through plate-glass windows when they get shot because movies don't have dance scenes any more. This is what we do instead.

Tags: Dance, Else, Movies

There are many films and TV shows I make where people find themselves in fantastical situations; as often as possible, their reactions to it are very normal.

Tags: Often, Possible, Themselves

There are two things that I cannot resist: one is musicals and the other is a spaceship in trouble. But I am smart enough not to combine the two things.

Tags: Cannot, Enough, Smart

There was a time before I felt I was a real writer, when I was a yarn spinner and I just wanted to tell story until it was over. But then there came a time where I was like, 'No, I want to understand something through writing this that I might have not understood before. I want people to come away with something to think about.'

Tags: Real, Time, Writing

There's a reason Tony Stark makes fun of 'Thor,' and mentions 'Shakespeare' in the park in 'The Avengers.' It's great to play high drama and comedy alongside a modern story.

Tags: Fun, Great, Reason

TV does a thing that film can never do. It takes you to a place that no novel written after the late 19th century can. You can just go through people's lives; it's like a marriage.

Tags: After, Marriage, Place

We are, all of us, incoherent text, and just knowing that - knowing that no matter how much you say, 'I am this' and part of you is not that - means that you can say it.

Tags: Knowing, Matter, Means

We need narrative; it feeds us in a particular way, and deconstructing it completely before you've actually experienced it, I think it leaves us unfed.

Tags: Actually, Leaves, Narrative

What 'Scream' was great at was presenting ironic detachment and then making you actually care about the people that were having it, and juxtaposing it with their situation, all in the service of making a great horror movie. It was fresh.

Tags: Care, Great, Service