Joss Whedon very much wanted to be the one to bring Wonder Woman to the screen, but failing in that, he’s moved on to another story staring a powerful young lady who kicks evildoer butt.
Variety reports that the world is ready for more women-led superhero movies, and Batgirl is finally getting her own standalone film. Whedon has signed on with Warner Bros to write, direct, and produce her story for the DC Extended Universe.
Whedon also signed a contract in 2005 with Warner bros for an ill-fated Wonder Woman pic, but left the project when he couldn’t come to an agreement with the studio over how to treat the character who would eventually be played by Gal Gadot in Patty Jenkins’ upcoming film. He told The AV Club in 2007 that the relationship just didn’t work out:
I knew exactly what I wanted to do. It was really just a question of housing it. I would go back in a heartbeat if I believed that anybody believed in what I was doing. The lack of enthusiasm was overwhelming. It was almost staggering, and that was kind of from the beginning. I just don’t think my take on Wonder Woman was ever to their liking.
I wasn’t getting them to feel what they wanted to feel. They couldn’t describe what that was to me. We’re talking about a huge investment. To ask somebody to jump on that, what is going to be a few hundred million dollars these days, if they just don’t have that feeling… I had that feeling. I got chills when I think of some of this stuff, but apparently I was the only one who was chilly. Everybody was very gracious about it. It was a blind date, and everybody thought we’d get married, but let’s just leave it at the door.
Since then, Whedon has proved he’s more than capable of wielding complicated superhero narratives while also setting up the many storylines necessary to continue a franchise—first with The Avengers, then Avengers: Age of Ultron. The world of super hero movies has also expanded enormously in the last 12 years, with nary a season going by without some new saga beginning, then interweaving with several others for optimal crossover effect. As Variety points out, following Wonder Woman, we can expect Justice League in November, Aqua Man in 2018, plus Suicide Squad sequels and spinoffs out the yahoo. Don’t even get me started on Marvel.
With the almost seamless mechanical production schedule of these babies, a Whedon produced Batgirl movie will probably have a much better chance of getting off the ground than the long ago break up with Warner Brothers suggests. Also, considering how dreary some of the DC movies have been, he’s got a low bar to cross.