James Cameron Says ‘Wonder Woman’ Is a ‘Step Backwards’ for Women in Hollywood
Complains about objectification. Wonder Woman Director Patty Jenkins Responds.
James Cameron was asked about strong female characters and the recent success of Wonder Woman in an interview by The Guardian on Thursday. In a move that surprises only people who have never heard a story about James Cameron, the Terminator director came across as incredibly arrogant and self-congratulatory
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! I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards. 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!
So he thought Wonder Woman was a “step back” but he got it right with Sarah Connor. OK, the interviewer asked the obvious question.: Why does Hollywood have such a problem creating strong female characters? Cameron was as perplexed as anyone.
I don’t – I don’t know. There are many women in power in Hollywood and they do get to guide and shape what films get made. I think – no, I can’t account for it. Because how many times do I have to demonstrate the same thing over again? I feel like I’m shouting in a wind tunnel!
Poor James Cameron. The rest of the world just doesn’t get it. How many times does he have to show us? I almost feel bad for the guy. Wonder Woman Director Patty Jenkins on the other hand, was not as impressed.
— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) August 25, 2017
There are two things to note here. The first is: I actually think it is worthwhile to discuss the idea of unrealistic beauty standards set by some female action heroes. Just because we love Wonder Woman is no reason to not look at some of the problematic aspects of how women are portrayed in general.
The second is that Sarah Connor is a phenomenal female action hero. Easily on my Top 5 list. Another one of my Top 5? Ellen Ripley. Largely because of her work in the Cameron-directed Aliens. James Cameron is legitimately great at writing and directing female action heroes.
He just also happens to be a giant egotistical jackass.