James Cameron has finally officially begun the process of making four “Avatar” sequels, as news broke on Monday that he’s begun principal photography and will shoot them in succession.
But before that he did a little bit of press, and once again addressed his headline-grabbing thoughts on “Wonder Woman.”
In late August, the director behind the last two highest-grossing movies of all time, “Titanic” and “Avatar,” opened up to The Guardian about the excitement around the success of “Wonder Woman,” as he basically threw cold water on the whole thing.
“All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over ‘Wonder Woman’ has been so misguided,” Cameron said. “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.”
Cameron then used the character from his “Terminator” franchise, Sarah Connor, as an example of a strong female character.
“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,” he said.
“Wonder Woman” director Patty Jenkins quickly took to Twitter to respond to Cameron’s take, in part stating: “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.”
Here is her complete statement:
— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) August 25, 2017
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter before shooting on the “Avatar” sequels began, Cameron doubled-down on his earlier comments:
“As much as I applaud Patty directing the film and Hollywood, uh, ‘letting’ a woman direct a major action franchise, I didn’t think there was anything groundbreaking in ‘Wonder Woman,'” Cameron told the trade. “I thought it was a good film. Period. I was certainly shocked that [my comment] was a controversial statement. It was pretty obvious in my mind. I just think Hollywood doesn’t get it about women in commercial franchises.”
- Warner Bros. Pictures
Cameron also continued his comparison of “Wonder Woman” star Gal Gadot to his Sarah Connor character from “Terminator,” played by Linda Hamilton.
“I mean, she was Miss Israel, and she was wearing a kind of bustier costume that was very form-fitting. She’s absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. To me, that’s not breaking ground,” Cameron said of Gadot. “Linda looked great. She just wasn’t treated as a sex object. There was nothing sexual about her character. It was about angst, it was about will, it was about determination. She was crazy, she was complicated. … She wasn’t there to be liked or ogled, but she was central, and the audience loved her by the end of the film.”
Before closing his thoughts on “Wonder Woman,” Cameron added a little detail on what he liked about Diana Prince.
“I like the fact that, sexually, she had the upper hand with the male character, which I thought was fun.”
“Wonder Woman” is currently the second-highest grossing movie of the year domestically with over $412 million.