“Scott Pilgrim” to battle at the box office

Stars of the upcoming movie “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” discuss the series’ jump to film

“Scott Pilgrim” to battle at the box office

Tony Libera

After six years, the beloved âÄúScott Pilgrim âÄù comic book series finally came to an end this past July. Friday, less than a month after the last volume was released, fans of the saga and moviegoers of all stripes can watch Edgar WrightâÄôs (âÄúShaun of the Dead,âÄù âÄúHot FuzzâÄù) hyper-stylized film version of the story. âÄúScott Pilgrim vs. The World âÄù doesnâÄôt adhere strictly to its source material, but the spirit of the books saturates every frame. A&E sat down with stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (âÄúLive Free or Die HardâÄù) and Brandon Routh (âÄúSuperman ReturnsâÄù) to discuss comic culture, fanboys and Edgar WrightâÄôs vision. Were you fans of the books before you signed on for the movie? MEW: I hadnâÄôt heard of the comic. I was a huge fan of Edgar, so when my agent told me that I had a meeting with him I was extremely excited. He started talking about this project and he gave me the first three [volumes] âÄî that was all that was out at the time âÄî and I took them home and read them and just instantly fell in love with them. I thought they were so funny and so different from anything I had read before, and the character of Ramona is so cool and interesting and unique. I knew I had to be a part of it. The âÄúScott PilgrimâÄù visuals draw heavily from videogames. Are you big videogame buffs? MEW: IâÄôve never really been that into video games, but when I watch the film and when I read the books I get every reference. So, I feel like itâÄôs just part of my childhood and the generation that IâÄôve grown up in. BR: I did grow up playing a lot of games, so reading the comics was a lot of fun. And to see how they were implemented in the movie was very cool as well. If you donâÄôt know them youâÄôre not going to miss out on anything; it just adds some nostalgia for the people who do know it. ItâÄôs hard to imagine anyone other than Edgar Wright directing this movie. What was it like working with him? MEW: One of the great things about working with someone whoâÄôs so brilliant is that they know exactly what they want and nobody questions it. It takes a load off to work with somebody when you know youâÄôre in good hands. He doesnâÄôt sleep, you know. HeâÄôs tirelessly passionate about what he does, so that kind of made us all step up and put all of our efforts into it. BR: He took a lot of responsibility on his shoulders and it paid off. But he was the only one who knew what his vision was, so he had to be alert and ready to explain that to everyone. [This movie] is making leaps and advancements in film, in effects, in the way you edit a movie and the use of sound. It will be really interesting to see, ten years from now, how many films have taken something from this movie. Comic book fanboys are notoriously critical of film adaptations. How has their reaction been? MEW: So far, itâÄôs been really positive. We screened it at Comic-Con , which is where, you know, the diehard fans all were. You could really feel their love for the film and their excitement about it. IâÄôm sure not everybodyâÄôs going to be happy, because you canâÄôt win them all, but I think the spirit of the books is so alive in the film. I think thatâÄôs whatâÄôs most important. I feel itâÄôs the most faithful, in spirit, of any adaptation IâÄôve ever seen. BR: Even though there are bits and pieces that youâÄôre not able to put in a two-hour film, the idea of the books is really in there âÄî the music coming to life, the video game fighting style âÄî and all that really colors the world in a way that comes straight from the books. âÄúScott PilgrimâÄù has been called a defining story of our generation. Do you think thatâÄôs the case? BR: This is a film for several generations, and the first film of its kind for those generations that really speaks to whatâÄôs happening for kids growing up now. The hyper-styled stuff that weâÄôre seeing âĦ maybe everybody wonâÄôt get, but I think itâÄôs pretty genius and brave for Edgar to do that. HeâÄôs certainly taking some risks with this movie and pushing the envelope in many ways. MEW: I think it strikes a chord for anyone who grew up with video games or who is sort of a part of that text messaging world right now where everything has to move so fast. This film moves faster than any film IâÄôve ever seen. I think thatâÄôs kind of what people are looking for right now, but at the same time itâÄôs so smart and the characters are so well written, and thatâÄôs also something we need. We canâÄôt just focus on the action and the speed and not have an interesting story and some heart and some intelligence.