Joss Whedon, geek icon and cult hero, apparently isn’t a fan of small independent features. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly creator recently took to the Internet to put a stop to the spreading word and success of a little film you may not have heard of: Mike Birbiglia’s Sleepwalk With Me.
Though Joss Whedon’s superhero ensemble flick The Avengers has netted about $1.5 million at the box office, its recently shrinking theater presence in favor of new films is absolutely unacceptable to him. The Avengers is has currently shrunk to a dismal 500 screens, while Birbiglia’s first film effort Sleepwalk With Me recently got upgraded from 30 to 80 screens, thanks to fan involvement and petition. “I’m here to put a stop to this,” says Whedon in an online video aimed at stemming the tide of attention Birbiglia’s film is getting.
“We’ve got fewer than 500 theaters now. They are creeping up on us. That makes me nervous and it offends me to my very core,” Whedon says, asking his fans to boycott this “hilarious, interesting and fun” film.
Now obviously, for those who don’t know Whedon’s antics well enough to know when he is being sarcastic, Whedon is being sarcastic. The video is hilarious, and meant to serve as guerilla/viral promotion for Birbiglia’s upcoming film (since anything Whedon says, Whedonites the world-over will do).
Mike Birbiglia, a frequent contributor to This American Life, a popular radio show with over 1 million estimates listeners weekly, has adapted his first film Sleepwalk With Me from his own one-act play, again based on his own life and sleepwalking problems. It opens on August 24th.
And just in case you didn’t take me seriously when I said that Whedon is known for his deadpanning and sarcasm, consider this quote about the rumors of a Whedon-less Buffy reboot: “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.”
Here’s Joss Whedon’s video, asking you to boycott Sleepwalk With Me. While we’re at it, here’s the trailer for Sleepwalk With Me as well: