Amazonian warrior princess Diana of Themyscira, a.k.a. Wonder Woman, is destined for either an appearance on the big screen (in live-action form, that is) or a return to television; right now, it’s merely a question of when and how will she be represented in the 21st century.
The collective public demand has only increased in volume in the meantime, as seemingly everyone (us here at Screen Rant included, naturally) has their own recommendations for casting and/or how to adapt the WW mythology to fit within the budding DC shared cinematic universe (established by Zack Snyder in this year’s Superman franchise reboot, Man of Steel).
The short of it? Someone needs to step up to the plate, if WB/DC wants to avoid taking (even more) flack for prioritizing TV shows like Gotham (i.e. a procedural drama featuring the Gotham City police) before they’ve either made additional progress on the proposed Amazon TV series (i.e. a prequel TV show that would be to Diana what Smallville is to Kal-El/Superman) and/or formally announced that active development has started on a Wonder Woman movie.
WB CEO Kevin Tsujihara has now officially added his voice to the growing outcry from the public, having said (via THR):
“We need to get Wonder Woman on the big screen or TV.”
Tsujihara once again reaffirmed that the studio has “huge plans for a number of other DC properties on TV,” even though he also acknowledged that the major brand properties (be they DC comic book movies or Harry Potter spinoffs) need to be balanced with more modestly-budgeted and/or original fare hereon out.
Interestingly, the box office success of Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity (an original sci-fi movie) should prove beneficial in terms of getting a Wonder Woman movie made, since it offers further proof that actress-headlined tentpoles are, in fact, bankable; not to mention, demonstrates that the best female characters are the ones written as people first (not “women”). Meanwhile, over at Marvel, talk of an Agent Carter TV series and female superhero movie being developed have only gotten the comic book crowd buzzing more and more about the (lack of a) Wonder Woman film to counter.
Of course, there have been a couple of attempts to get either a Wonder Woman TV show or film off the ground in recent years. Ally McBeal creator David E. Kelley envisioned Diana as a working-class gal with a secret identity, but the pilot for his TV series never reached the airwaves (and with good reason). Similarly, before that, Avengers director and Agents of SHIELD co-creator Joss Whedon strived to put together a Wonder Woman movie using a narrative formula – where Diana is taught compassion for humanity’s failings by a mortal love interest – that Marvel Studios would, to a degree, eventually wind up employing in order to introduce Thor to a mainstream audience.
Then again, such big names as DC President Diane Nelson have (indirectly) acknowledged that there are key differences between Princess of Themyscira and someone like the God of Thunder (besides gender, that is), since the former is far more iconic and representative of important feminist ideals (to mention nothing of the variation, when it comes to her origin story). As such, introducing Wonder Woman to the big screen with a semi-comical fish-out-of-water setup (a la how director Kenneth Branagh did with the Thor character) might not be the best way to about managing the task.
Curiously, the one filmmaker who has spoken about taking a Biblical approach to Wonder Woman – along the line of Snyder’s take on Superman – is Nicolas Winding Refn, who has previously expressed his desire to adapt the DC mainstay to the big screen. It’s an interesting prospect, the idea of a Wonder Woman film with the mythological heaviness of Valhalla Rising (Refn’s Viking drama, starring Hannibal‘s Mads Mikkelsen) and a version of Diana with as much coiled piss and vinegar in her spirit as Kristin Scott Thomas’s dragon-mom in Only God Forgives (albeit, with the physical prowess to match). But… yeah, that’s probably not going to happen.
What does seem more likely is the chance that the Wonder Woman movie could bear a resemblance to the stylish short film/concept pitch that Rainfall Films unveiled but a week ago (at the time of writing this); or, maybe in the vein of the grittier Thor sequel, a.k.a. the upcoming Thor: The Dark World. As for the possible TV show in the form of Amazon: after Smallville, Arrow and the upcoming The Flash, there’s not much reason to assume that the presentation will be anything revolutionary. (Whether it will or won’t do justice by the character, that’s another story…)
We’ll keep you posted on any future Wonder Woman-related talk as we hear it.