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Patty Jenkins Talks How ‘Superman’ Inspired Her for ‘Wonder Woman’

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What the director had to say about how the 1978 'Superman' inspired and guided her with 'Wonder Woman.'

Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins seemed like a natural showing the title character’s organic growth maintaining her principles throughout the film.

That might be due to her exposure to the 1978 Richard Donner classic, Superman. Jenkins was seven years old when she saw Christopher Reeve flying on screen amazing audiences to stand up for truth, justice and American way. Nearly 40 years later, Jenkins would take those principles and mold them to her own for Wonder Woman. She talked to Entertainment Weekly about the experience making the film.

As a woman alien to the ways of the outside world, like Superman, Diana learns quickly she must make her own way and lead by example. It was Donner’s film that inspired Jenkins to make her own way to pursue cinema calling it “her Star Wars.”

Jenkins said she wanted to accomplish two things. First to make star Gal Gadot fight like Wonder Woman and maintain her femininity while she fought.

“She doesn’t punch people in the face. That’s not the most effective way to stop something from happening and she doesn’t stomp on somebody’s chest to get information. She’s not that kind of person.”

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When working with stunt coordinators, Jenkins insisted her heroine maintain her grace instead of hunched shoulders or grunting.

“That’s not my dream. That’s not my fantasy. I don’t want to make her into a man. I want her to keep her integrity and grace while she fights.”

Jenkins also mentioned the dedication on taking on such an ambitious project.

“I believe in the vigilance of that art. To stay vigilant every single day for the entire time is what the job is. It’s tiring. You want to go home, but then you’re like, ‘Hey, can we work this weekend?’ Wait, who said that? ‘God damn it! It’s me.’”

Gadot complimented on Jenkins’ dedication.

“Patty has this amazing ability to pay attention to the smallest details at the same time, still not forgetting about the bigger picture and the broader message. Working with her is working with someone who doesn’t give up, that doesn’t get exhausted at any time.”

Wonder Woman is currently in theaters.

Tom Chang
Sci-fi and technology geek since the NES days, Tom loves everything from the cult classics, the contemporary hits to the beast with two backs that is Disney and Marvel. His life's mission is to be the ultimate nerd savant sitting on the iron throne as CEO of Skynet while masquerading as a vigilante at night wearing hockey pads.