Monday, June 25, 2007

Wonder Woman: Not Coming To A Theater Near You
The bloggers Tom and Lorenzo, referencing a Premiere Magazine article on the non-existent "Wonder Woman" movie and other celluloid M.I.A.s, comment:

"Since Lynda Carter last wore the bustier, there have been five Superman movies, five Batman movies, three Spider-Man movies, three X-Men movies, two Fantastic Four movies and a slew of low-level, crappy, no-one-cares superhero movies like Daredevil and Ghost Rider. In all that time, they can't put together ONE film about the First Lady of Superheroes? We want our ass-kicking femme in 4-inch heels and we want her now!"

They also feel that the inability to drag WW out of development hell "smacks of sexism."

What exactly is the deal with getting this movie made? Is part of the problem the fact that she is a female character? Have big-budget bombs like "Elektra" and "Catwoman" spooked Warner Brothers?

My feeling is that the latter is the culprit, specifically the dismal performance of "Catwoman."

But I also think the problem with the movie is the same problem DC has had with the comics -- an inability to really nail down the character. The last time I really thought WW was done right was in the 80s (although Chris Moeller's "A League of One" and Darwyn Cooke's take on her in "New Frontier" were interesting, and Phil Jimenez's version had a lot of heart).

Maybe with Gail Simone on the book, the right tone for Wonder Woman will be set, and perhaps this will "leak" over into the movie plans.

As for now, we will have to have our thirst for cinematic superheroines to be filled by Jessica Alba.

Please, WB hurry!

(with thanks to the always-alert David Le G)


  1. joss whedon shouldve been able to do whatever the hell he wanted to, joel silver is an idiot.

  2. Enough with the "Joss is God" comments. Anyone who noted the considerable success of the TV series "Xena: Warrior Princess" should have realized that a Wonder Woman movie, done right and faithfully, could succeed. And perhaps Whedon could have done a good job, though I fear the character would have been too Buffyfied. But there are others out there who could do WW justice, as long as it's done with a modicum of intelligence, doesn't stray from the character's roots ("Catwoman's" fatal flaw) and appeals to the general audience, not just adolescent male comic geeks. But that would take imagination and courage, two traits in short supply in today's film industry.

  3. i never said joss is god, i just feel had they let him do whatever he wanted to, the film wouldve actually been made, and most likely enjoyable on top of that.

  4. I fear that the problem is a clash of ideology in Hollywood. I suspected Producers and bankrollers want a movie that's T&A, Charlie's Angels-style antics since it's about a superheroine and one in a bathing suit costume, at that, whereas writers, directors, etc. want a story about the more traditional Wonder woman, so no one can come to an agreement on it.

  5. Lewis, I think your observations are probably spot on. Hollywood has a total T&A blind spot where female superheroes are concerned - even more so than the comics industry itself. This is why all the existing female-fronted films have sucked. I mean, exactly who was Catwoman supposed to appeal to? It seemed to me to be specifially designed to alienate every possible audience demographic.

    Personally I feel that whether Joss is God or not is a matter for debate amongst learned theologians - i for one would worship at his altar - but would he have been able to do Wonder Woman justice? For me a key element of the character is majesty. WW has a nobility which I have yet to witness in Joss's writing to date. She would certainly not suit the self-affacing, angsty humour we fans love him for.

    However, Joss doing something badly is generally better than most other creatives doing something well, so I am disappointed I'm not going to get to see his take on the character.

  6. First time commenting...

    I think if you look at what happened at Warner Bros with regards to superhero franchises, it looks good for Wonder Woman.
    1) compare Catwamon/Superman Lives to Superman Returns/Batman Begins. I think WB learned a valuable lesson - stay true to the character. Catwoman was so far from the concept that made her cool in Batman Returns (& the comic) and WB spent millions of dollars in scripts/designs trying to re-invent Superman.

    When they saw the success of Xmen 2- not reimagined but faithful, WB chagned its tune.

    In the same vein, WB was developing Wonder Woman just like Superman Lives, Joss was trying to re-invent Wonder Woman (never read the script, if it was even completed) as evidenced in press releases: no suit; no gods.

    WB has got to be asking itself, does it want to re-invent WW (cause that works so well in the past) or do they need to go with a true-to-the-roots story about WW???

    I think Joss could have written at great female superhero movie, but I don't think in the end that it would be recognized as Diana, Princess of the Amazons' fighting the good fight in patriarchs world.

    And in the end, DC/WB wants bankable franchise with many many sequels.

    so while it may take a few more years to get her on the silver screen, I think we will get a much better movie than Joss's verison of super female spy hero that's really a wonderful woman.

  7. I think the biggest problem with a "Wonder Woman" movie is pretty obvious. Would someone out there tell me what "Wonder Woman" is all about? To the majority of folks out there, she's nothing more than a pretty lady in tights beating up bad guys... and that's all she really was when she was first made. Complain about the T&A factor in Hollywood, but there is plenty of that in her comic origins.

    Now, tell me what "X-Men" is about? "X-Men" is about racism, people who are different fighting for a place in everyday society.

    "Batman?" That's all about how revenge can take over a person's life... how easy it is to become a monster and stop being a man while trying to do the right thing.

    There's another point to consider. Wonder Woman suffers in film because she doesn't have really any good villains. "Batman" and "X-Men" have a lot of great ones... villains with inner demons that work great in film. I don't see that "Wonder Woman" has as much to work with where villains are concerned, not any that translate well into film.

    I think this is also why a lot of the "Superman" films have suffered. Let's face it. Most of "Sup's" films have been pretty bad.