Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead on Directing Episodes 2 & 4

With the new Marvel series, moon knightnow streaming on Disney+, I recently spoke with directors justin benson Y Aaron Moorehead about directing episodes two and four of the series. During the interview, they talked about how they got involved in moon knightwhat surprised them about working with Marvel, why they wanted to put a big spin on the series, how they ended up directing episodes two and four, and what it was like to bring moon knight to life in her first live-action role. Also, with Benson and Moorhead co-directing most of the episodes of Loki Season 2, they talked about how they got involved in that series and why they are excited to be a part of that show.

COLLIDER DAY VIDEO

moon knight follow Steven Grant (oscar isaac), an affable gift shop clerk at a London museum, who suffers from fainting spells and flashbacks to another life. Steven soon discovers that he has dissociative identity disorder and shares a body with mercenary Marc Spector, a former US Marine who was granted supernatural abilities by the Egyptian moon god Khonshu. As Steven and Marc’s enemies converge on them, they must navigate their complex identities as they plunge into a deadly mystery among the mighty gods of Egypt.

moon knight also stars May Calamawy (Framework), uliel gaspardY F.Murray Abraham like the voice of Khonshu. The series is also directed by Mohamed Diab (episodes 1, 3, 5 and 6) and is produced by Feige, along with grant curtis, tommy turtle Y jeremy slater.


See what Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead had to say in the player above and below is exactly what we talked about.

COLLIDER: Had they been talking to Marvel about things before moon knight? How did all this happen for you?

AARON MOORHEAD: Yeah. In fact, we’d been going to Marvel over and over and trying to find something to work on together. And they very genuinely said the same thing every time. It was like, “We have to find something. And this one came out, I think, in November 2020. We released this while we were working on this Netflix show called file 81. We actually had to ask for time off production to release this, and they said, “We get it. You should do that.”

But also under full COVID lockdown, and it was like a deep, deep, full COVID lockdown where we were in hotel rooms or on set and that was it. That’s how we celebrated receiving this. We ran into each other’s room, big hug and all. We’re like, “I wish we could go out to eat.”

JUSTIN BENSON: It was also a bit surreal from the point of view of when I was eight years old or something, I had my first fascination with comics. I remember trying to share that with my schoolmates. I remember them looking at me like I walked into the coolest punk rock store in the world and asked for Green Day. They’re like, “No, no, no, no. Whatever you’re reading, don’t read it. Moon Knight is great.” Somehow, I always had this memory of being eight years old and being told about it, and then we got the job to do it. It was like, “Oh, we’ve got the good stuff.” Like, this is the cool superhero.


Oscar Issac Moon Knight Reflection

RELATED: ‘Moon Knight’ Director Mohamed Diab on His 200-Page Presentation, Costume Design & Why He Thinks Kevin Feige Is a Genius

Obviously, this is your first big Marvel thing. What ended up surprising you about working with them that you might not have expected to get into?

MOORHEAD: Well, I think everyone has this idea of ​​a somewhat monolithic structure for Marvel where people would wonder, as independent filmmakers, if we would feel shackled or something. And honestly, it was so incredibly collaborative. I think that was the big surprise. We knew they would be collaborative. We know they are the best type of company that wins the idea, but we didn’t realize how much freedom we would have.

And not just the two of us, but all of us. I mean, Oscar and Ethan and May had a huge part in the story that we’re telling, not just as actors, but as writers, as storytellers. I think there was always something like, “Can we do that exactly? Can we be that weird or go that far off the rails?” Or actually even seeing Wanda Vision, we didn’t actually know they’d commit to that crazy format, that you’d think their target audience probably hadn’t even seen a black-and-white sitcom, but they did. They just committed to him completely. It was really cool to find out how bold they were willing to be as long as we were the ones pushing it. Not just the two of us. That is to say, we, all the collaborators of the project.

One of the things about Marvel, and I think the reason people love Marvel, is that every time they do something, they just reinvent what the superhero genre can do. And that’s why there’s no fatigue, so to speak, with Marvel properties. Can you talk about that aspect?

BENSON: With moon knight specifically, there’s something obvious like, there’s no reason to do it moon knight unless you’re going to be bold, that character specifically. But beyond all that, we always felt that if we weren’t bold, if we didn’t go left of center, if we didn’t make big changes, that we were missing the point of what this universe wants from us. .


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Image via Disney+

RELATED: Ethan Hawke on ‘Moon Knight’ and playing a character who is malevolent but completely sane

How did they end up doing episodes 2 and 4? Were you almost going to do 3 and 5? How was that discovered?

MOORHEAD: No, actually. Do you know what’s funny? We were already deep into production when we talked to Mohamed. We’re like, “Why do we have 2 and 4?” We’ve just been introduced to 2 and 4. Honestly, the answer is very, very boring. There were like logistical calendar reasons and all that and because… Have you seen the episodes? Well. So without giving things away for people who haven’t, but 4 is, in many ways, location-wise, it’s very much its own.

So it might be something that we were able to cordon off a little bit. Episodes 1 and 2 talk to each other a bit more. But that was kind of like we were discovering the production. Again, you’ll see with 5 and 6, again, very much their own voice to each other and to the rest of the episodes. That was more or less why, is that each episode has its own voice and we were given 2 and 4.

moon knight it’s obviously never been done in live action before. This is the first time he’s been brought into the MCU. Do you feel like it’s easier or harder when a character like this, when you have free rein to create?

BENSON: It’s not that it’s easier or harder in terms of telling the story that you want to tell with this character. What comes with that being a bit difficult is that the pressure to do well, I guess, is a bit higher.

MOORHEAD: Yes.

BENSON: Because it hasn’t been done yet. Also with a character who is legitimately as beloved as moon knight, and wanted to be something different, and that comes with its own set of pressures. You just want to make sure you get it right.

MOORHEAD: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

BENSON: But in terms of telling a story using a character that doesn’t have a set live-action mythology, it was actually easier in some ways. Plus, 50 years of great comics to inspire us could at least be as simple as a piece of art we love from one that would inspire a full shot. But if. I mean, I guess in some ways, it was a little easier for him not to have a live action preset.

MOORHEAD: I mean, you’ve seen all of our, I think, all of our standalone features. They all share a universe, so the idea of ​​working within a shared universe feels strangely natural to us. But actually, it was much more exciting. I think it was very, very exciting that there were no limits to what it had to be, nowhere it had to fit.

BENSON: Other than having these, not only, I mean, everyone knows that Oscar Isaac and Ethan Hawk are some of the greatest actors of our generation. But they’re also great novelists, filmmakers, and screenwriters, and to be in a situation where they could take some kind of personal authorship over the creation of these live-action characters, well, I mean, you’ve got two of the best. we have right now doing that. And so that, that was exciting.


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Image via Sundance

Before I run out of time with you, since we’re talking about Marvel, I might as well mention Loki. How did they connect for that?

MOORHEAD: I mean, we’re still processing the job. But I guess what we can say about that is that we’re very, very proud of what we’ve done in moon knight. I think Marvel really likes what we can do in moon knight. And so we hope to take all the lessons that we learned, which are endless, the incredible amount of life experience, crafts and art that we create in moon knight. And we want to take all of that and repackage it as we lead Loki.

BENSON: Plus, it’s also nice to tackle another character in the MCU who is defined by being different from the rest of the group and…


MOORHEAD: Another outcast. Yes.

BENSON: They all have complexity, but these two have complexity from being marginalized, and there’s something about that that feels very special and an honor to address.

Cold. Thank you very much, and seriously, congratulations.

MOORHEAD: Take care. Thanks.

BENSON: Thank you. It was good to see him on a familiar face today.

moon knight now streaming on Disney+


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