×

James Cameron Calls ‘Wonder Woman’ a ‘Step Backwards’ for Female Protagonists

Wonder Woman” may have received overwhelmingly positives notices, was a box office behemoth, and is even getting an Oscar push from Warner Bros., but it has one high-profile critic.

In an interview with the Guardian, James Cameron took on a different tone, taking aim at the way the iconic superhero, played by Gal Gadot, was portrayed.

“All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over ‘Wonder Woman’ has been so misguided,” he told the outlet in an interview to promote the “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” re-release. “She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!”

Cameron has been recognized for his female protagonists, including Rose (Kate Winslet) in “Titanic,” Neytiri (Zoe Saldana) in “Avatar,” and perhaps most notably, Sarah Conner (Linda Hamilton) in “Terminator.”

“I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards,” he continued. “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!”

While “Wonder Woman” has been generally praised for portraying its title character (and her fellow Amazonians) as a powerful, complex female figure, it’s received its fair share of criticism, too. Director Patty Jenkins addressed those concerns in an interview with the Los Angeles Times in May, telling the publication, “I get frustrated by people who think that they’re defending [Wonder Woman] by trying to make her lesser. When people get super critical about her outfit, who’s the one getting crazy about what a woman wears? That’s who she is; that’s Wonder Woman. I want her to look like my childhood fantasy.”

Popular on Variety

But, still Cameron makes it clear that he continues to be all for women being represented in film.

“There are many women in power in Hollywood and they do get to guide and shape what films get made,” Cameron said. “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!”

Variety has reached out to Cameron’s camp for comment.

More Film

  • (center) George MacKay as Schofield in

    '1917,' 'Succession' Among Top PGA Award Winners

    “1917” continued its string of major awards season wins on Saturday night, earning the Producers Guild of America award for best picture. Coupled with its win for best picture, drama at the Golden Globes, the WWI movie is officially the front runner for Oscar’s top prize. “It’s a film that is a tribute to all [...]

  • Bong Joon Ho, Jane Rosenthal, David

    Netflix Praised by 'The Irishman,' 'Marriage Story' Filmmakers at Producers Guild Panel

    Streaming giant Netflix received strong support from filmmakers behind “The Irishman” and “Marriage Story” at the Producers Guild of America’s nominees panel on Saturday at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. Jane Rosenthal, one of “The Irishman” producers, said Netflix embraced the vision that she and Martin Scorsese had for the $170 million film. [...]

  • Gabriel Harel on MyFFF ‘The Night

    Gabriel Harel Discusses Dystopic Parable ‘The Night of the Plastic Bags’

    With his first short film, the animated “Yùl and the Snake,” Gabriel Harel won Europe’s Cartoon d’Or for the continent’s best animated short film, given at the 2016 Cartoon Forum in Toulouse. Now, Harel’s awaited sophomore effort, the animated “The Night of the Plastic Bags,” competes at UniFrance’s MyFrenchFilmFestival, and is available on a swathe [...]

  • MyFrenchFilmFestival: Profiling Benjamin Crotty’s Short ‘Nicolas

    ‘The Glorious Acceptance of Nicolas Chauvin’: Nationalism Wrapped in Charisma

    Winner of Locarno’s Signs of Life section, Benjamin Crotty’s “The Glorious Acceptance of Nicolas Chauvin” has enjoyed more than 12 months of festival success and critical acclaim as it reaches the end of its festival run at UniFrance’s MyFrenchFilmFestival. A modern take on one of France’s most influential yet widely unknown characters, the film headlines [...]

  • Alexander Ludwig

    Alexander Ludwig on Sharing his Recovery Journey, Playing the 'Bad Boys' Tech Guy

    With his towering height and stature, Alexander Ludwig looks every bit the action star, first appearing as Cato in “The Hunger Games,” and more recently as fierce Norse Viking chief Bjorn Ironside on History Channel’s “Vikings” and in “Bad Boys for Life,” the third installment of the “Bad Boys” franchise, with Will Smith and Martin [...]

  • Will Smith and Martin Lawrence star

    Box Office: 'Bad Boys for Life' Scores Big With $66 Million Launch

    “Bad Boys for Life” is showing plenty of power at the North American box office with an impressive  launch of around $66 million at 3,740 venues over the four-day holiday weekend. Sony’s sequel to 1995’s “Bad Boys” and 2003’s “Bad Boys II” far exceeded the studio’s pre-release forecasts of a $38 million weekend. The film, [...]

  • A Bump Along the Way Movie

    'A Bump Along the Way': Film Review

    While “Derry Girls” continues to be the last word in young, raucous female rebellion on the Emerald Isle, “A Bump Along the Way” has a little something to add. Sin the same Northern Irish city as the hit Netflix sitcom, but shedding the ’90s nostalgia for the Snapchat age, Shelly Love’s appealing, unassuming debut feature [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content