Kevin Feige also discusses how WandaVision ties into Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Lovin Dublin was lucky enough to take part in the global press conference for WandaVision, the first Marvel Studios series to launch on Disney+.
For those who don't know, it tells the story of Wanda (Elisabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany), living a perfect sit-com life, happily married in a picturesque American suburb. But as anyone who has witnessed the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, all is definitely not what it seems.
Throughout the course of the show, Wanda and Vision are living their lives through the lens of famous TV shows, reminiscent of Bewitched and The Brady Bunch and other famous landmark sit-coms, but how and why remains a mystery.
As part of the press conference, which included Olsen, Bettany, and some of their co-stars such as Katherine Hahn (who plays new character, nosy neighbour Agnes) and Teyonah Parris (who plays the grown-up version of Monica Rambeau, who we first met as a child in Captain Marvel), we asked those involved in the creation of the show about the creepier aspects and influences that seep in through the season.
Matt Shakman (Director/Executive Producer), told us the following:
"We often talked about when we were in our period sit-coms, that when something shifted from say a Dick Van Dyke or I Love Lucy-style into something that was outside of that, that it was going into kind of The Twilight Zone. We were thinking about what were the period shows that addressed the odd and the strange, and how could we embrace that so that's a little bit about how we approach the shooting of it certainly in the look of it."
Following on from that, Jac Schaeffer (Head Writer/Executive Producer) added:
"Yeah, absolutely The Twilight Zone is an enormous influence on me, personally. I really think that's actually kind of how I learned how to tell stories, is from The Twilight Zone, and it was so incredibly deft at that turn, when you think you're in one sort of thing and then suddenly it's slipped on its head, and we were all incredibly enamoured of that. And then I think there are a lot of current shows right now, like prestige series, that are doing this very exciting thing where you watch a couple episodes and you think the show was one thing, and then by episode four or five, it flips the script. So that's really I think where the more contemporary references come in in terms of kind of boundary pushing in in genre."
Considering that WandaVision officially kicks off Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and considering how well planned out the MCU has been to date, there is already excitement about where it is all heading. When Kevin Feige (Executive Producer) is asked if he can reveal which project will represent the end of Phase Four, he simply says "No", but has more to say about what WandaVision will represent for the MCU as they head into the beginning of the new phase:
"I hope it says get ready for for the new and the different, and I hope all of our movies have said that one after the other over the years, but certainly with the Disney+ opportunities, it is allowed us to expand creatively what we do. Yes, the original plan was The Falcon and The Winter Soldier was gonna debut first last year, followed very soon behind WandaVision, so creatively it didn't reshuffle. Part of having a long lead plan is having the ability and the ideas of how to shuffle should the need arise.
"I'm not saying we were prepped for a global pandemic, we were not. But we've always over the past twelve, fifteen years of Marvel Studios been able to shuffle around. This required no shuffling whatsoever in terms of the creative, just in terms of production. And as is often the case ,when you're thrown curveballs - this is a sports reference all stop right there, so I'll blow it - but the unexpected has often served Marvel Studios well and it has served us well in this case, because this show being our first one.
"I love how bold it is. I love how different is, and I love as I said before, it is something you could only see on Disney+, that we have things that you will only be able to see initially in theatres, we have things that could end and are made for that and this is very much made to be seen week after week on television, which is very different for us and was very fun and it is as bold as it comes thanks to everyone you're looking at here today."
The first two episodes of WandaVision arrives on Disney+ on Friday, January 15, with the rest of the show coming out weekly after that. Expect a full review of the first few episodes on Lovin Dublin this week.