At the Nerd HQ panel during SDCC, Joss Whedon explained why he thinks Hollywood still has a long way to go in terms of diversity.
NerdMachine’s Nerd HQ welcomed Joss Whedon Sunday morning during San Diego Comic-Con, for an hour-long sit-down with the fan-favorite creator.
While Whedon doesn’t currently have anything to promote, he was ready to discuss whatever the fans wanted him to — including diversity in Hollywood, and the state of society right now.
“This is a very interesting time,” said Whedon. “There have been so many advancements in human rights and in understanding — in my own understanding — of who we are and how we are, and it’s beautiful.”
But, Whedon added, “at the same time we’re seeing an undertow of, I think, partially a reaction to that. Of ‘I don’t want the world to change, so probably… kick out Muslims? Let’s kick out Muslims. That’ll solve that.’ So there’s been so many things you could look at and be so proud of, and yet it feels like society is… I don’t want to say crumbling, but crumbling.”
Looking specifically at the entertainment industry, we’re all aware of the negative reactions to diverse representation; Ghostbusters is the obvious example, but both Star Wars and Star Trek have been accused of ‘pandering’ because they’ve included persons of color, women, and LGBT characters in lead roles.
That backlash is something we’re still dealing with, and it’s a well-documented fact that Hollywood is slow to catch up in terms of representation. Or, in Whedon’s words: “Diversity… (mumbles) Hollywood’s working on that one!”
He adds, “obviously TV in so many ways is ahead of film, and theatre is ahead of everybody, and they’re so full of themselves. ‘We had a Hamilton, you guys didn’t have a Hamilton!’ Ohhh, Hamilton (smiles).”
Finally, Whedon wants to make it very clear who he won’t be voting for in the upcoming elections. “I don’t mean to be polarizing, but please do not make a cantaloupe with Tourettes our next President,” he says.
Watch the rest of the panel, in which Whedon also reveals his favorite TV shows and says he won’t direct a Doctor Who episode until there’s a female Doctor: