Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman movie is still two years away from seeing release but that hasn't kept it from being one of the most talked about movies - for both good and bad reasons. A recent report from behind the scenes at the superhero movie making factory at Warner Bros revealed a studio that is struggling to put the pieces together for their new comic book universe and even come up with a vision or a story to movie forward on - and their Wonder Woman movie is taking the biggest hits.
Wonder Woman & The Modern Superhero
In all fairness, when it comes to opening the door for female superhero movies, some of the folks at Marvel aren't any more confident about how to proceed. An email from Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter to Sony CEO Michael Lynton has recently been circulating and it is one of the more revealing looks at how the movie studio mindset is still stuck about a decade in the past when it comes to their willingness to make a superhero movie centered on a female character.
The email, pulled from the Sony hacks of last year, cites the box office failures of Elektra, Catwoman and 1984's (!) Supergirl as prime examples of how there is no audience for female superhero movies. And this is coming from Marvel - the studio that reinvented and reinvigorated the superhero genre from the pit of despair that it was in during the days of Catwoman and Elektra. Sadly, Marvel reinforced this point of view again this year by failing to produce Black Widow or Scarlet Witch action figures.
It's clear that the audiences for movies like Avengers: Age of Ultron are not the same audiences that were around when movies like Elektra or Catwoman - and especially Supergirl - were making their way to theaters. The quality of the superhero movie has risen dramatically and there is a new generation of fans who have grown up on post-Iron Man movies who could care less about someone pointing to ancient Box Office Mojo figures as a reason for not making a Black Widow movie in this day and age. The fact is that the audiences going to see movies like Avengers 2 and Captain America have a far higher percentage of woman showing up than ever before.
Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman Leads the Charge
Even if it appears that Warner Bros and DC have no clear plan on what their doing exactly with their solo Wonder Woman movie, they'll still be a year and a half ahead of Marvel's Captain Marvel movie. It could be this pressure, of being the first female superhero movie since Catwoman and Elektra, that is leading to all their indecision and putting multiple writers to work to see what sticks. One thing does seem certain though - even if they don't have a clear idea of what kind of movie Wonder Woman will be, they know what she's going to look like.
It's interesting that reports are circulating about the creative forces behind the Wonder Woman movie failing to even agree on what era the movie is supposed to take place but the looks are already being planned. So it makes sense that the two Wonder Woman outfits that we've seen so far have a certain timeless quality to them. But there's no real guarantee that this concept art isn't part of ousted director Michelle MacLaren's vision for the character which was reported as being "Braveheart" inspired.
What a Wonder Woman Fan Wants
Warner Bros responded to Michelle MacLaren's action-heavy-spectacle vision for Wonder Woman by giving her the boot and saying that they're looking for a more "character-driven" take on Wonder Woman. This can be looked at as either some simple PR campaigning about the "creative differences" angle that was cited for the split, or that Warner Bros really does think that a female superhero movie needs to be aimed squarely at females who, in their mind, respond less to action and more to touchy-feely emotions.
Are the other DC Comics movies like Aquaman or The Flash going to follow this path of being more "character-driven" than action oriented? Each of these movies should have their own unique look and style to them but a Braveheart inspired take on Wonder Woman sounds exactly like the kind of movie that they should be making over at Warner Bros. It's not like "action epic" is completely at odds with "character-driven".
There's no reason why a Wonder Woman movie should be any different than what Marvel did with Thor - the characters aren't too dissimilar and if Warner Bros and DC decide to go out of their way to make the movie different than other superhero movies than that's when they really will run the risk of having Wonder Woman flop. It's won't fail because it's a female superhero movie - it will fail if you start treating it like a female superhero movie.
What do you think? Are DC and Warner Bros doing too much second guessing on their Wonder Woman movie? What kind of Wonder Woman movie do you want to see? Let us know in the comment section below!