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Elizabeth Olsen: “WandaVision” may be a gateway to classic sitcoms

Los Angeles (USA), Jan 12 (EFE) .- “I love you, Lucy”, “Bewitched”, “The Dick Van Dyke show”. These legendary comedies from the United States are an essential influence of “WandaVision” (Scarlet Witch and Vision), Marvel’s brilliant new bet for television and whose protagonist, Elizabeth Olsen, believes that this series may bring new generations closer to history of the “sitcom”. “I wonder if ‘WandaVision’ can open a new door (to classic sitcoms) for the younger audience,” he told Efe. With his inseparable Paul Bettany (Vision) by the hand, Olsen (Sherman Oaks, USA, 1989) returns as Wanda to present on Friday this ingenious series on Disney + (the first Marvel original on this platform) that unites two codes audiovisuals in principle very remote: the subgenre of superheroes and the situation comedy. Far from the overwhelming adventures of the Avengers in the movies, this series begins with Wanda and Vision as the idyllic couple in a “sitcom” of the 50s: house with a garden in the suburbs, naive humor, gossiping neighbors (Kathryn Hahn), naive romance and action in black and white. But the daring journey of “WandaVision” goes further, since each chapter touches a different era of the “sitcom”, with Olsen and Bettany modifying their voices and gestures in each chapter, due to a mystery that changes time in this surreal but fascinating world of comedy with superheroes. Question: I never would have guessed that Marvel would make a “sitcom”. How does “WandaVision” expand what a Marvel movie or series can be? Answer: What is really exciting is that Kevin Feige (president of Marvel Studios) had this opportunity to expand Marvel movies on a “streaming” platform and transform them into series. So the amount of time you have on a show really frees up how we tell our stories. I think he is allowing the stories to be surprising, original, creative and weird. And I think these are also big risks. People got used to knowing what to expect. Even when stories are surprising or what happens in them is surprising, the public knows what to expect from them when they see them. So I think he is allowing the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) to be surprising and creative, and I just feel very lucky to be part of such a strange and original concept for these superhero series (smile) . Q: How much did you know about these “sitcoms” that “WandaVision” is inspired by? A: I watched a lot of these classic series when I was a kid because we had a channel called Nick at Nite with “I love you Lucy”, “My beautiful genius (I dream of Jeannie)”, “Bewitched”, “The Mary Tyler Moore Show “,” Laverne & Shirley “… And I thought they were a lot of fun. With our series, it was above all, as a cast, to have the same references, to have the same “new language” of “sitcom”. So we did this kind of boot camp with our director Matt Shakman and our screenwriter Jac Schaeffer. For each episode we all had a specific series as a reference so that we could know what world we were in. People have been wondering “how is this Wanda different?” But we are simply in a different world, playing by the rules of a different world. And this world is that of an American “sitcom”, it depends on each era, and this is how our characters will evolve and change. Q: We used to think that Wanda (Scarlet Witch) was a very serious, dramatic and emotional character, but here we see her comic side. A: I think it was not so strange for me to change from the Wanda from the movies to the Wanda from these episodes because I always knew the big picture, I always knew where we were going. I was never confused by answering the “why” question, as there is an answer to everything here. MARVEL FOR ADULTS? Q: Is “WandaVision” a more adult-oriented series? Do you think young audiences will enjoy “WandaVision” even if they don’t know the classic sitcoms it is based on? A: I don’t know, I’m curious. We went through a long list of decades (smiles), so I wonder if this will be some kind of special opportunity to introduce children to this style of television in some way or how it used to be, if they had not seen it (…). I wonder if our series can open a new door for the younger audience. Q: You have worked with Paul Bettany for many years. What kind of relationship and chemistry is generated with an actor after working so long together? A: The luck with Paul is that he and I have a very similar way of working. We both like to over-prepare (laughs). But some actors don’t like that because there is a surprising nature in not over preparing and allowing yourself to be surprised or whatever … But he and I like to over prepare so that we can forget our work when we are doing it. and simply interpret the scene. I think we have developed a lot of trust between the two of us to allow ourselves to be very stupid, make mistakes and make bad decisions and still be there for each other. We feel very confident in being able to laugh at ourselves with each other and I think that was a lot of fun. I mean, if you think about it in these Marvel movies we look very stupid most of the time: he is painted in a funny color, I have false powers that sprout from my hands … So you really have to be able to stop aside from those other stupid things and feeling stupid and being able to focus on the other on an emotional level (smile). And you end up developing this kind of comfort on screen together. David Villafranca (c) EFE Agency

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