by Scott Huver, published on April 13, 2010|
Writer/director James Gunn swung by the Streamy Awards, where he gave up the goods on his upcoming film Super, a sort-of-but-straight-faced superhero parody starring Rainn Wilson as an everyday guy who takes it upon himself to fight crime. And Gunn uncovers--or maybe not the bare truth if his web series "PG-Porn."
ComingSoon.net: Talk about your upcoming superhero comedy project, because it sounds pretty cool!
James Gunn: The movie is called "Super." It stars Rainn Wilson and Liv Tyler and Ellen Page and Kevin Bacon and Nathan Fillion and Michael Rooker and all the people that I've worked with before. It's a low-budget independent, sort of a black comedy, sort of a weird drama about a guy who wants to be a superhero and really doesn't have what it takes.
CS: Is it a straight-up comedic take because we've got "Kick-Ass" coming, which is kind of a bloody, beat-the-crap-out-of-everyone take?
Gunn: It's very, very different from "Kick-Ass" because it's really an independent film, because it's about a group of people, it's a black comedy but it's also really about these people who are struggling to change their lives and trying to grasp on to something that's beyond human. Any maybe or maybe not they can do that in the end.
CS: So there's a realism to it?
Gunn: A hundred percent, totally naturalistic. Everything is really natural. There's a lot of violence and sex but it's still very naturalistic.
CS: And Rainn isn't a delusional guy?
Gunn: Well, you know, delusional is very harsh but he's a guy that wants to be something more than what he is, yes.
CS: How super-heroic does he get? Are there moments where it actually is a superhero movie?
Gunn: In some ways, but not completely. I mean he punishes people for things that perhaps they shouldn't be punished for.
CS: Now talk to me about your online ventures.
Gunn: Well, really tonight I'm here for "PG-Porn," which I created with Pete Alton and it's everything you love about pornography except the sex. It's when you're sitting down and watching a great porn movie, you're enjoying the acting, the story, the cinematography, the lighting exactly and then all of a sudden someone comes in and ruins it with this f*cking sex. It's irritating. It's irritated me for a long time. So I created non-sexual pornography. I'm at the forefront of the revolution. I think in years it's all anybody is going to be talking about. That's what "PG-Porn" is.
CS: You're filling a niche that wasn't there before.
Gunn: Yes. Every episode features an actual actor of some type like Nathan Fillion or Craig Robinson from "The Office" or Alan Tudyk and it also features a porn star, Belladonna, Sasha Grey, Bree Olsen and we kind of put them together and come up with something interesting.
CS: Did you decide to do this because there are so many ways or opportunities to succeed or make mistakes that aren't on that same level as a traditional media?
Gunn: The internet? It's a hundred percent internet and I started delving into this stuff because I had the freedom to do whatever I wanted. At the time that I started doing "PG-Porn" I was working on a huge A-list, $150 million movie, that I was going to write and direct for a big studio. I was getting very fed up with it and I just couldn't take it anymore. So I left and I said that I was going to get back to my roots. I started in very low budget independent film, and then start doing exactly what I wanted to do. So we started doing "PG-Porn." We did a web show called "Humanzee," something called "Sparky and Mikaela" for Xbox and really got back into creating content where I had no bosses. I just got to do whatever I wanted and that made it a lot of fun.
CS: Do you find that people in the traditional film and television world are taking note of some of this work online?
Gunn: For sure. I know that we're selling the rights to foreign countries of "PG-Porn," both TV and web rights. I think we're probably one of the most financially successful web series and we originally did the show for a lot of money. I paid for everything. I paid for every dollar of all the first episodes of "PG-Porn" and then we went out and we sold those. So we actually make money off of them which I think is a rare thing today.
CS: And the first episode had over a millions views in the first week?
Gunn: In a week. Now it's hit about seven million hits.