Comic book movies have been a thing for about as long as Hollywood has been a thing, but the modern age of Superhero movies didn't really get going until around 2000. That was when X-Men came out, which changed everything. Cut to 17 years later and we still have yet to have a good, female-led superhero movie in the modern era. Wonder Woman is hoping to change that this summer.
Warner Bros. may be a little late to the game in terms of making a cinematic universe around their DC Comics superheroes when compared to Marvel Studios, but they are beating Marvel to the punch on this one. Marvel Studios has strong female heroes like Black Widow and Scarlet Witch, but after nearly a decade of making comic book movies, they have yet to make a movie featuring a female as the lead. Warner Bros. is releasing Wonder Woman as their fourth movie as part of the DCEU, which is way ahead of the game in that respect. Here is the official synopsis for Wonder Woman.
"Wonder Woman hits movie theaters around the world next summer when Gal Gadot returns as the title character in the epic action adventure from director Patty Jenkins. Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, when an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers...and her true destiny."
Even though this will be the first solo Wonder Woman movie, we have already seen the big screen version of Diana Prince last year, and what we saw was by most accounts very encouraging. Gal Gadot's performance as the character was one of the most praised qualities of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, even from those who didn't particularly enjoy the movie otherwise. This time it is going to be different, though. It is her movie. It is her time to shine and that is something fans of the character have been waiting a very, very long time for.
There are a lot of superhero movies coming out this year but perhaps none will wind up being more important than Wonder Woman for a lot of reasons. Not only is the fate of the DCEU largely resting on its shoulders, but being that this is the first female-led superhero movie of the modern era, there are some massive expectations heading into it. So, here is what we know about the Wonder Woman movie.
Patty Jenkins is directing.
The world has been waiting for quite some time on a female-led superhero movie in the modern era and fortunately, Wonder Woman is going to be that movie. Not only is the movie going to primarily follow a female hero, but it is actually going to be a woman behind the camera as well. Patty Jenkins hasn't directed a movie since 2003's Monster, but she is making her return to features with Wonder Woman.
Hollywood isn't notorious for giving female directors big opportunities, but Warner Bros. seems to be making a statement with Wonder Woman. It is a female-driven story and it is probably best handled with a woman in charge. Don't think that Warner Bros. gave her the project simply because she is a woman, either. Even though she hasn't directed a theatrically released movie in more than a decade, she has been working on very well-regarded TV shows like Arrested Development and The Killing. Assuming Wonder Woman is a big hit, it could be a big step not only for Patty Jenkins, but for female directors in general.
The budget is huge and historical.
The exact budget for Wonder Woman hasn't been revealed yet, but we know that it is going to be more than $100 million. That is really common for a big superhero movie of this scale, but it is very significant in this particular case. Why exactly? Well, because it is only the second time in history that a woman is going to direct a movie with a nine-figure budget and it is the first time since 2002 when Kathryn Bigelow did it on K-19: The Widowmaker. Again, no pressure on Patty Jenkins, but K-19: The Widowmaker was a huge flop, only bringing in $65 million worldwide, which probably didn't help encourage studios to hire female directors for big projects. If Wonder Woman succeeds, which it almost certainly will, it will be a huge deal. Assuming the movie can also be a critical success, Patty Jenkins is in a serious position to do some big time trailblazing.