It’s official, Joss Whedon is still a jerk

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With. A. Capital. J. In a desperate attempt to stay relevant, Joss Whedon is lashing out against his accusers including Gal Gadot and Ray Fisher in a classic narcissistic deflection move. For whatever reason, Vulture decided to give this guy a voice and allow him to completely dismiss the very well-documented and investigated allegations against him. 

In the interview none of us asked for, Whedon specifically addressed Gadot’s complaints, even going as far as implying her grasp on the English language was limited in an almost xenophobic statement, “English is not her first language, and I tend to be annoyingly flowery in my speech.” However, in an email to New York Magazine, Gadot disagreed with Whedon’s assessment: “I understood perfectly.” He vehemently denied threatening her career, basically calling the Wonder Woman actress a liar, “I don’t threaten people. Who does that?” Whedon told Vulture.

According to former Angel and Buffy the Vampire star, Charisma Carpenter, that’s exactly what Joss Whedon does. 

In addition to calling Gadot a liar (or a dimwit who can’t understand English), Whedon also denied Ray Fisher’s allegations. In a Forbes interview, Fisher said he’d been told Whedon had used color correction to change an actor of color’s complexion because he didn’t like the actor’s skin tone.

Forbes chose to remove those specific quotes literally the next day stating, “This quote from Fisher was deemed to be primarily based on third-person information and was removed: “What set my soul on fire and forced me to speak out about Joss Whedon this summer was my becoming informed that Joss had ordered that the complexion of an actor of color be changed in post-production because he didn’t like the color of their skin tone,” Fisher firmly stated. “Man, with everything 2020’s been, that was the tipping point for me. 

In the Vulture article, Whedon was compelled to address this allegation and the article claimed he was “stunned” and that “he had given the whole movie a lighter look, brightening everything in post-production, including all the faces.” Whedon even went as far as saying that Fisher was perhaps manipulated by someone, maybe from Snyder’s camp, stating, “We’re talking about a malevolent force,” he said. He then went on to insult Fisher’s acting, “We’re talking about a bad actor in both senses.” He continued, “I don’t know who started it,” he told Vulture. “I just know in whose name it was done.”

In regards to massively cutting out Cyborg’s scenes, Whedon goes as far as attempting to gaslight readers by insisting that he “spent hours discussing the changes with Fisher” and that their conversations were “friendly and respectful.” None of the claims Fisher made in the media were “either true or merited discussing,” Whedon told Vulture.

Of course, history says otherwise and at Fisher’s urging, Warner Bros. had conducted a series of investigations into the Justice League production. The studio won’t disclose its findings, but in late 2020, it announced “remedial action” had been taken. A few weeks earlier, HBO had revealed Whedon would no longer serve as showrunner of The Nevers, his science-fiction series about women with supernatural powers. The network scrubbed his name from the show’s marketing materials.

Ben Affleck didn’t have the greatest time making Joss Whedon’s Justice League either. Further discrediting Whedon’s account of what happened on the Justice League set, Batfleck himself told Los Angeles Times, “It was really Justice League that was the nadir for me. That was a bad experience because of a confluence of things: my own life, my divorce, being away too much, the competing agendas, and then [director] Zack [Snyder]’s personal tragedy [Snyder’s daughter Autumn died by suicide in 2017] and the reshooting.

“It just was the worst experience,” Affleck said. “It was awful. It was everything that I didn’t like about this. That became the moment where I said, “I’m not doing this anymore.”

Whedon also lashed out against feminists who turned on him after his ex-wife, Kai Cole’s 2017 open letter, detailing his abusive behavior, which was published in The Wrap. “They don’t give a f**k about feminism,” he said. “I was made a target by my ex-wife, and people exploited that cynically.” He further explained his theory, “She put out a letter saying some bad things I’d done and saying some untrue things about me, but I had done the bad things and so people knew I was gettable.”

After dismissing and deflecting Fisher and Gadot’s complaints against him in the Vulture article, shockingly Whedon accepted the tiniest bit of responsibility for how he treated Charisma Carpenter, but then in the same statement, belittled the cast as he acknowledged he was not as “civilized” back then. “I was young,” he said. “I yelled, and sometimes you had to yell. This was a very young cast, and it was easy for everything to turn into a cocktail party.”

The Vulture article briefly mentioned Michelle Trachtenberg’s claim that there had been a rule forbidding Whedon from being alone in a room with her on the Buffy set. Whedon claimed he had “no idea” what she was talking about. But the publication confirmed through sources that during the seventh season, when Trachtenberg was 16, Whedon called her into his office for a closed-door meeting. The source does not know what happened but recalled Trachtenberg was “shaken” afterward. An adult in Trachtenberg’s circle created the rule in response.

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Even though Vulture shared that Whedon had attempted some public relations polishing stunt, seeking treatment for sex and love addiction, along with other addictive tendencies, much like other fallen and canceled celebrities like James Franco, Kevin Spacey, and Harvey Weinstein, it seems it was still too soon for him to make any kind of public appearances or interviews, since he is either unwilling or unable to accept responsibility for his actions. 

Fisher responded to the interview in a tweet:

The rest of Twitter decided not to mince words

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Joia DaVida reports on the entertainment industry in both Chicago and Los Angeles.