Joseph Hill "Joss" Whedon (born June 23, 1964) is an American screenwriter, film and television director, film and television producer, comic book author, composer and actor. He is the founder of Mutant Enemy Productions and co-founder of Bellwether Pictures, and is best known as the creator of the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997–2003), Angel (1999–2004), Firefly (2002), Dollhouse (2009–10) and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (2013–present). Whedon co-wrote Toy Story (1995), wrote and directed Serenity (2005), co-wrote and produced The Cabin in the Woods (2012), and wrote and directed The Avengers (2012), the third highest-grossing film of all time, and its upcoming sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015).
Whedon is notable for his signature dialogue, which features dry self-referential humor and heavy emphasis on subtext. His work is permeated with themes of feminism, anti-authoritarianism, existentialism, and self-sacrifice. He often uses misogyny to define the trait of a villain, and his protagonists tend to be loner heroes who start out powerless and regain control from community in order to fulfill a purpose.