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.

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.

Wonder Woman (2017)

Wonder Woman’s Early Reviews Are In — And They’re Superb

New poster touts a four-star review and quotes a reviewer who calls it “The Superhero Movie of the Year.”

Like everyone else who wants to see female superheroes succeed, we’ve been holding our breath and praying for Wonder Woman. It has been a decade since twin bombs Elektra and Catwoman were released and “proved” to studio executives that audiences won’t watch female-led superhero movies. (The fact that both of those films were awful never entered the conversation for some reason.)

So if Wonder Woman is anything less than excellent, we might have to wait another 10 years for studios to try again.

The movie is embargoed — so critics are not allowed to post reviews until closer to the release date — but based on Twitter chatter from people who have seen the film, we can breathe a sigh of relief. Wonder Woman is good. Really good.

Wonder Woman Poster - Four Stars
Wonder Woman Poster – Four Stars

Eagle-eyed fans spotted new Wonder Woman posters touting a four-star review from the British tabloid the Daily Star, with a pull-quote proclaiming it “The Superhero Movie of the Year.”

Daily Star movie critic Andy Lea confirmed on Twitter that he wrote the review. He called the movie “dark” and “funny” and singled out Gadot’s performance in a now deleted tweet.

Comic book writer Marc Andreyko (Wonder Woman ’77) also had his Tweet deleted, but he had nothing but praise for both Jenkins and Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot.

I can’t get into specifics but @GalGadot gives a beautiful, nuanced, powerful performance, @PattyJenks is SO GOOD with actors.

Other reviewers were more circumspect (probably to avoid the nasty phone call from Warner Bros. Lea and Andreyko likely received), but all indicators are that the movie is fantastic.

Bustle‘s Anna Klassen heaped praise on the film’s director.


Batman-News.com didn’t see the film, but spoke with many people who had.

We should take all of this with a grain of salt. Early Twitter reviews for almost any movie are generally positive. Still, positive buzz is a good thing, and both fans and professional critics that have seen the movie seem genuinely excited by the film. The praise seems universal, and that can’t be seen as anything but a wonderful development.