Joss Whedon's Encore Post-Avengers? Nothing

His film The Avengers is one of the highest grossers of the year and legions of fans gave adulation to him at the recent Comic-Con and even more did so at the box office. So what do you do when you have a blockbuster that has made nearly $1.5 billion worldwide and quickly counting? Take on Shakespeare and Much Ado About Nothing!

Well, he's done it already and it's headed to the Toronto International Film Festival in September, but the film adds to the filmmaker's wide-ranging repertoire which has included, of course, The Avengers, a portion of last year's doc Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope (as a writer) and TV episodes of Glee, The Office and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Whedon's version of Much Ado About Nothing will be a contemporary version of the Shakespearean story, which was shot in just 12 days, the Los Angeles Times notes. Toronto programmers noted the black and white movie "offers a dark, sexy and occasionally absurd view of the intricate game that is love." The Bellwether Pictures project actually completed shooting last fall, well ahead of The Avengers massive debut in April. The film stars Amy Acker (from Whedon's Cabin in the Woods and Alexis Denisof (How I Met Your Mother) as Beatrice and Benedick, which Bellwether calls "the least likely lovers" who are headed for their "inevitable tumble into love."

It is not the first time the story has been picked as a springboard for a contemporary re-telling. Kenneth Branagh took it on back in the early '90s. That version starred Branagh along with Emma Thompson, Keanu Reeves, Kate Beckinsale and Denzel Washington.

Also starring in Whedon's Ado are Nathan Fillion (Waitress, Clark Gregg (Avengers, Fran Kranz (Cabin in the Woods and Reed Diamond (Moneyball).

[Source: Los Angeles Times]