With all the interest in superhero films these days, it’s odd to realize that one character is seemingly being left out of the action.
I’m talking about character who is just as iconic as Batman and Superman, yet Green Lantern was given a film before this superhero.
Personally, I think it’s ridiculous that they haven’t given this iconic character a shot yet, because the time is ripe to put Wonder Woman on the big screen.
There have been many attempts. Several versions were under development when producer Joel Silver (Lethal Weapon, The Matrix, and Die Hard) was attached. At one point, Joss Whedon was tapped to write and direct a Wonder Woman film (MY GOD, who do I have to kill to get a chance to read Whedons script?!) There was a terrible Wonder Woman TV pilot from producer David E. Kelly. There was another TV attempt called Amazon for the CW Network.
Why is Wonder Woman so hard for them to figure out? I never really understood that. I personally felt that Thor was going to be the trickier god/warrior/superhero concept but here we are waiting for the SECOND Thor film coming out this year.
Is it the fear of making a female a lead in a big budget film? I find that to be a really silly answer, especially in a world in which The Hunger Games has become a successful franchise, despite the fact that it starred an actress who wasn’t a really big name yet. (But we all know who Jennifer Lawrence is now, don’t we. )
While Hollywood is trying to figure this out, some professional filmmakers have taken it upon themselves to prove that Wonder Woman is ready to be a feature film.
Earlier this year, a filmmaker named Jesse V. Johnson made this fan trailer to showcase how they would do Wonder Woman. It got some small buzz online, so I went to go check it out….
….and I was not that impressed. I’m a bit confused that for some reason this movie that seems to be set in World War II has Wonder Woman fighting in front of a modern LA Cityscape. The tone seems wrong for Wonder Woman, a bit too dark action movie for my taste. Also, the costume was a bit underwhelming. It looked like a very nice cosplay costume, one that I would not sneer at if I saw it at a Comic Convention, but for this movie it looks very cheap. And I get that this was probably made cheap. I won’t snicker too much at it because I have no clue if they were REALLY serious that this was how they would do Wonder Woman or if they just made this for fun. Either way, I thought it was sorta neat, but in god’s name I don’t want to see THAT Wonder Woman film.
Two days ago, another Wonder Woman fan film popped up online, this time directed by Sam Balcomb . I was hesitant to watch it, due to how much I wasn’t crazy for the last attempt. But soon, I keep seeing people on Facebook and on other online blogs posting the video and talking about it.
So, I once again braved the world of fan films and gave this one a shot too….
While one could joke that this looks like a very good commercial to a Wonder Woman video game rather than a movie, re-read what I just wrote. A VERY GOOD COMMERCIAL. Granted, the smart move on the filmmakers’ part is that they decided to not try to tell a story but to do a concept/mood piece based on Wonder Woman. Already this is an improvement over the previous fan film. While I wouldn’t call it an amazing film, it’s a great looking piece that is a very loving tribute to Wonder Woman.
While both fan films suffer the stylistic choice to do the Zack-Snyder-style–of-action-filmmaking (ramp UP…sloooooow dooooooown…RAMP UP…sloooooooooooooow doooooooooooooooooooowwwn), this one I felt visually was much more beautiful to look at, and very cinematic.
While she didn’t say any lines, Rileah Vanderbilt fit the role much more than Nina Bergman (who played Diana in the Johnson fan trailer). Vanderbilt just flat out looked like an Amazon, unlike the slim Bergman. Vanderbilt also had the poise and the attitude down pat.
And her costume? WOW!
It’s a fantastic way of incorporating all the iconic Wonder Woman designs but changing them to look more practical and modern.
I like the glimpse of Themyscira, and the way they shot it to look more dreamlike and heavenly. Oh, and having Diana face off against GIANT minotaurs is not a bad thing.
Unlike the other fan film, the reaction to this is HUGE! It’s been up for two days and it already has up to 3 Million views on Youtube.
So what does that mean? For me, it’s not so much that I want to see a big budgeted version of of the Sam Balcomb take (thought if they could keep that costume..) but it proves one thing.
YES, there is a demand for a Wonder Woman film. People want to see it. The fact that this fan film was featured on Good Morning America proves that people DO want to talk about her again.
And more importantly, they don’t want just ANY movie. They want this movie to be done RIGHT. The Johnson fan film didn’t get viral because fans knew it wasn’t that good of a film. The Balcomb film? A far superior work that looked great and sold the character much better.
Will Warner Brothers listen? Who knows, but while they try to figure out how to combine Batman and Superman in one film, I can only hope one studio executive heard about this and is starting to pay attention.
Right now? We can only dream.
WRITER NOTE: I just realized that this will be my second post about a DC fan film on the site. What does it say that I find the fan films based on DC characters far more interesting then the actual live action productions that DC has out? But, that is a different blog topic all together.