Joss Whedon and "Avengers" fans everywhere rejoice: ABC has ordered a "S.H.I.E.L.D." pilot from the "Buffy" scribe which will focus on the secretive military cum-police force of the Avengers universe. Whedon will direct, pending his schedule, and will co-write the pilot along with Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen. Production starts "immediately," according to Deadline.
Earlier this month, Marvel Studios and Disney CEO Bob Iger announced that Joss Whedon would be back to write and direct "The Avengers 2," and would develop a live-action TV series for Disney based on Marvel characters.
The decision to make the Marvel TV show a S.H.I.E.L.D. one makes sense from a practical perspective: it will no doubt be cheaper to produce than a superhero show, which would undoubtedly require a signficiant investment of resources in expensive computer effects.
In terms of talent, Pajiba notes that Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury probably won't be featured other than a few cameos, but Whedon could bring back some of his usual suspects, among them Alan Tudyk, Summer Glau and Eliza Dushku. Depending on the future of "How I Met Your Mother," Cobie Smulders could even return as Maria Hill in the series.
Whedon, of course, is a busy, busy man: his live-action modern day take on Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing" will debut at the Toronto International Film Festival next month. Filmed in black-and-white in 12 days at the director's Santa Monica home, "Much Ado" features Nathan Fillion, Sean Maher, Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Ashley Johnson and Tom Lenk.