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WandaVision Head Writer Jac Schaeffer Spills The Secret Everyone Missed - Exclusive Interview

We've spent the entire WandaVision run and then some giving Looper readers an inside look at the series and have interviewed several of the creatives behind the show — often multiple times. This includes head writer Jac Schaeffer, who we spoke to closer to the show's debut — and now again since the WandaVision finale aired. No longer bound by spoiler restriction, Schaeffer was able to speak freely about her time on the show and any clues we might have missed. And hoo boy, was there at least one clue everyone missed.

Schaeffer also spoke about the involvement of Evan Peters, described scenes that didn't make it into the final cut, and shared her favorite WandaVision memes. She also answered a question that has baffled about millions of potential WandaVision fans: just where exactly is Westview in New Jersey? The state's been tearing itself apart, more so than usual, and needs a distraction since the New Jersey Devils aren't all that good this year.

Westview's location in New Jersey and what Agatha was doing all along

New Jersey-based WandaVision fans, including myself, have been trying to guess where Westview is in New Jersey. I'm not even joking. The Star Ledger, our state paper, actually ran an article trying to guess where it was. They use the 732 area code. People were saying maybe Hunterdon, maybe Monmouth. I say it's in Sussex County. So where is it?

[Laughs] I mean, this is just because of my family, but like, I'm going to say it's in the Trenton/Princeton/Lawrenceville area. I mean, I just feel like it's in that zone, is what I'm going to say.

Well, that explains the 732 area code.

Actually, it's been a long time since I've looked at area codes. I went to Princeton, and my mother is from Jersey. And so that's what I was seeing the whole time I was writing it, whether or not that's true, but I love that that's your question! That's great.

So now that we've gotten that out of the way, what was Agatha doing all along?

Agatha sniffed out that there was some crazy, crazy magic going on, and it's her bag to take people's crazy magic. And so she showed up, and she watched and waited.

In the room, we would talk about her mode, her process. And she's been around a long time, as you've seen, based on her flashback at the top of episode eight. And she knows not to poke a bear or whatever. So in our minds, she showed up, and she assimilated. And she watched and waited and kind of tried to stir up some trouble and see what would happen and hopefully get the information that she needed. And then it became too late, and she had to force the issue.


Have you been following all the memes that have been coming out of WandaVision? Have you been following the TikTok audios and the turtleneck memes?

Yeah! I have a wonderful young cousin. She's a teenager. Her name is Sarah, and she sends me all the TikToks. I loved Sarah for keeping me in with the youth. And then the memes, yes. I love the memes. In my writer's room, we do a lot of sending of the memes to each other, and we are 100% entertained by quality memes.

Any ones that stick out to you?

Well, Agatha All Along, like blaming her for everything. Did you see the one where they blame her for the Snyder Cut leak?

Oh, I haven't seen that one yet! That's a new one!

[Laughs] Oh God. That was really funny. That was super funny. And then what else? Wait. There's one I want to shout out, and I can't... Oh, I saw a tweet. This is not a meme. I just saw a tweet that I really like, and I wish I could attribute it to the right person. And I can't remember it. So maybe someone in your viewership could figure it out.

But it said a man was talking about that he had just watched all of the MCU movies, the movies that his wife refers to as the WandaVision prequels. [Laughs] I mean, that's not the case, but...

There's one where it's a BTS shot from Ragnarok, and it's Cate Blanchett in costume, and Taika is showing her something, but she's on a platform. So she's like towering over him, looking really skeptical. And he's really trying to show her something. And the meme of it was like "me when I talk to my family about WandaVision theories." [Laughs] I love those, when it illustrates what the home environment is, with regard to WandaVision viewership. Those are my favorite memes.

The White Vision clue most people missed

Oh, that leads perfectly into my next question, which is that there's been a lot of speculation, just the whole season long. And obviously, the show is kind of built for speculation, and people have unearthed all these little clues. Were there any clues you left that you didn't see mentioned that often?

I think I was expecting people to figure out White Vision. And there was a little bit of peripheral conversation, but it didn't seem to really make it to the fore. Hayward is working on something called Project Cataract. I just thought that would tip people off, and it didn't.

Also, no one has talked about the fact that when Monica comes to meet Hayward for the first time at SWORD headquarters, they have that whole conversation, and Vision is just right down that hallway. If they just stepped over to the little deck, she would be like, "And there's Vision down there." He's just a baddie, that he would just hide that from her.

It's like the scary movies, where there's a girl tied up in the basement, and the cop is talking to her, like Misery. You know? Like he's in the back, and she's talking to the sheriff. That's what it reminds me of.

You might've seen it on my face. I just made that connection now. I'm like, "Oh yeah, that's the same office." All she had to do was look to the left a little bit.

I know. It's so dirty. He's got the blinds closed. And like, why would you do that? Why would you be like, "Oh, obviously in this building, there's an atrium, but down in the atrium is where they're doing all the science experiments on the synthezoid"? But it's, like, I love it. And it just seemed really dastardly to me.

Cut scenes and what's next

So I caught a little bit of Matt's interview with Kevin Smith the other day. And he talked about how there were certain scenes that you wanted to put in and couldn't come together, because of various constraints. I think the one he mentioned was Señor Scratches and the Goonies idea that didn't quite come through. Which ideas were the hardest to cut?

There were more scenes in the base, with Monica and Jimmy and Darcy, things that were on the page that we didn't shoot, where there was more theorizing. And we ultimately determined that it was just too much treading water. And also, it was a little bit self-congratulatory, because it was a lot of them figuring out the mystery, which was a mystery that we as writers built. So, correctly, those things fell to the side. But I think I just loved the trio so much, that it would have been fun to shoot and include more of their ensemble. So that, and then with the tags, the tags get rewritten a bunch of different times. You have to go with the one that links up correctly, but there were a few that I wrote that I was like, "That's fun writing." Maybe that'll find a place somewhere else.

So what was the last day on set like?

The very last day on set, I was not there for COVID reasons. Yeah. And then I'm trying to remember the last day that I was on set, because that last small phase of shooting was really hard, because of the fires and COVID and everything else.

Oh my God, I have no memory of my last day on set, because it was probably at the pop-up base. We were at the pop-up base forever, and it was a really hard shoot, and in the middle of the night and cold and raining. So it probably had something to do with cold or rain and nighttime.

So where do you think all of these characters are going next, if you have any say in that whatsoever?

I don't know where they're going next. I can't wait to buy my ticket and go into a theater and see Doctor Strange 2.

Evan Peters and Quicksilver

So Evan, when you brought him in, what was the process of bringing him in like?

Well, that was sort of a high level thing in the beginning, of like, "Can we do this? And like legally, can we do this?" And then when did we first meet him? Oh my gosh, I'm blanking about if he came in. With most of the actors, they came into the writers' room, and I pitched them the whole show. I remember doing that for everybody except Evan.

We might've been out of the room by the time we cast him. I cannot remember. Yeah. So I'm sorry. I have no answer for you for that. I just remember being with him on set, because he's so great on set, and he did a really excellent job with... He had a bunch of ad-libs that were great, like, "Who's the popsicle?" At the end of five. That was his. "You a fan of Steven Seagal?" That's him. So funny

There was a little line where he talked about how he died for no real reason. Was that any commentary on how Quicksilver died in Ultron, or was that just a funny line you wanted to throw in?

I'm going to "no comment" on that one.

All right. I had to get it out there. Just wanted to be sure.

Yeah. I really like that you asked that question, though!

Humor and closing thoughts

So Marvel has a very specific sense of humor in general. Did you have any guidance from higher levels on how to handle that?

No, I don't know. It's a very intuitive thing. I mean, this show in particular has so many types of humor. I don't know. I think that Marvel humor, the majority of the people that work there have that — like that's Kevin's humor, Mary, my producer, Mary Livanos.

I don't know. I think it's more of an attitude. It's like a genuine, sincere love for the material and a desire and an intention to take it all seriously, but a simultaneous awareness of the silliness of it. And then I feel like it's all born of a sense of community, right? Like the Avengers Assemble. And we also all gathered to watch these projects and love them and talk about them and pore over every last detail. So I think it's that sort of twin thing, of celebrating and also a little bit making fun of it at the same time.

Is there anything out there about this show that people haven't noticed that you really want to bring attention to? It could be a clue you left, or it could be just the theme you really want to drive home a little bit more, anything like that?

I feel very lucky as a creator, that people have picked over the bones of the show really thoroughly. And I also feel like the things that were important to me have been acknowledged, and that's things like that there are so many women in the cast and that they're all so nuanced, and they're not just props. So I really appreciate that, that it's been, like, singled out as a success of the show.