Wonder Woman was by all accounts a massive success. It has set box office records left and right, earned nearly universal acclaim (including from us at AiPT!), and is viewed as a hugely positive step forward for the portrayal of women in superhero movies.
You can’t please everybody, though, especially one high-profile person: James Cameron. In a recent interview with The Guardian, the Avatar creator called the film “a step backwards.”
All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over ‘Wonder Woman’ has been so misguided. She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!
Going on to compare Wonder Woman to characters from his own films, Cameron added, “Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefit of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”
Patty Jenkins, director of Wonder Woman and never one to back down from criticism, shot back with a tweet, saying “though he is a great filmmaker, he is a not a woman.”
— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) August 25, 2017
“If women have to always be hard, tough and troubled to be strong, and we aren’t free to be multidimensional or celebrate an icon of women everywhere because she is attractive and loving, then we haven’t come very far have we,” asked Jenkins in her confrontational tweet.
Though it’s possible to see Cameron’s point to an extent, it’s unclear how Wonder Woman, a film directed by a woman, is “male Hollywood doing the same old thing.”