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Joss Whedon talks to The Times about the challenge of pulling together The Avengers, in an era of summer event movies:


Q: Are you concerned about the growing fatigue with summer event movies, and how that could affect the reception for "The Avengers"? 

 A: I'm one of those guys who will be as crabby as anyone: They're only trying to make franchise movies, where are the prestige pics? Where are the '70s, where are people taking chances? While I'm making a giant, tentpole, franchise, action summer movie. [mock defensiveness] That doesn't make me a hypocrite - it just gives me layers. [fake weak laugh] There's a weird kind of cultural obsession with instant gratification that has entered our business model. Nobody's interested in making a living - they only want to make a fortune. With the amount of money we made "Avengers" for, you could make a lot more movies. Now, in Marvel's case, these are movies that I think deserve to be bigger than life. And "The Avengers" being the culmination of this grand plan that has had no less than five movies leading up to it, deserves to be as big as it is. I feel like you have to deliver scale in this movie. Hopefully, they got the right guy to do it or I'm in big trouble.

I'm going to see this, oddly enough, out my love for Whedon's comic book work. His Astonishing X-Men is one of my favorite X-Men runs ever. I wish he'd come back. 
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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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