She returned to direct the highly anticipated sequel Wonder Woman 1984 after the first film was rapturously received.
But now Patty Jenkins has indicated that she may not return for a third movie in the blockbuster series starring Gal Gadot.
During a conversation earlier this week on Josh Horowitz’s Happy Sad Confused podcast, the 49-year-old filmmaker admitted she had already written out a story for a proposed Wonder Woman 3, though she might not be the person in the director’s chair.
Two and done? Patty Jenkins indicated that she may not return for a third Wonder Woman movie on the Happy Sad Confused podcastearlier this week; seen in May 2019 in LA
Jenkins sounded optimistic about a third entry, even though Wonder Women 1984 has been receiving more reserved praise than the first film from 2017.
‘I actually came up with a story, and Geoff Johns and I beat out an entire story for Wonder Woman 3 that we were super fired up about, but I’ve never felt this way before as much as I do now,’ she shared.
Whether or not her version of Wonder Woman 3 ever sees the light of day, it’s likely to take a while.
‘I don’t think I’m doing it next and so I have to sort of wait and see where we are in the world, you know?’ she continued.
Planning it out: ‘I actually came up with a story, and Geoff Johns and I beat out an entire story for Wonder Woman 3 that we were super fired up about, but I’ve never felt this way before as much as I do now,’ she shared; still from Wonder Woman 1984
Jenkins was excited, but said, ‘I don’t think I’m doing it next and so I have to sort of wait and see where we are in the world’; seen in 2017 with Gal Gadot (R)
‘What I wanted to talk about in [Wonder Woman 1984] was very prescient to what I was feeling and what you were sort of feeling was coming. So now I’m not sure. So much has changed in the world.’
Jenkins insisted she ‘still love[s] the story, I’m sure parts of it, would come over to it, but … I’m trying to say [to myself], “Don’t decide. Don’t fall in love with anything. What would Wonder Woman do now? Like, what are you craving Wonder Woman to do now in this world?”‘
Although she is unsure about the future of the franchise, Jenkins recently admitted she ‘could make 700’ Wonder Woman movies because she loves the superhero so much.
‘I loved getting to do it, and it felt very much like we were getting to talk about it now. And my favorite thing about Wonder Woman is that we have a superhero book that stands for love and teaching love to mankind,’ she added.
That’s why I feel like I could make 700 of these movies. There’s nothing about this, that’s like, “I’m sick of that!”
‘That’s like life’s journey for all of us, learning how to be more loving and better people. So, it’s like having a metaphor to talk about the challenges that we all face. Trying to be better people is wild and wonderful.’
Bad sign: Prior to signing on for WW84, negotiations dragged on, indicating how much harder it was for a woman to get a significant payday on a blockbuster comic book film; still from Wonder Woman 1984
Seeing her value: ‘I was like, “Listen, I never made any money in my career because you always had the leverage and I didn’t.” But now the shoe is on the other foot’; seen in 2017 with Gadot
Although there are plenty of perfectly benign reasons why Jenkins might not return for a third Wonder Woman film, even if Wonder Woman 1984 is a commercial success, the lead-up to the sequel doesn’t augur well for her.
Industry observers expected a quick transition to sign Jenkins for the second film following the strong reviews and whirlwind success of the first film, but negotiations dragged on longer than expected.
The delay highlighted how male directors are often offered large franchises despite having little experience, whereas female directors with proven track records don’t get the same offers, and sometimes they’re not invited back for sequels even after they’ve made a successful film.
Jenkins confirmed on the podcast that negotiations took so long because she was holding out for a better pay day after making a relatively small amount on the first Wonder Woman.
Uphill battle: Jenkins eventually got fair compensation for WW84, but the difficult negotiations make it less likely that she’ll direct a third film in the series; still from Wonder Woman 1984
‘It’s interesting as someone who never made any profit in my career up until Wonder Woman, that I was always at peace with it. I was like, “Hey I get it,”‘ she explained.
‘But now I was like, “Listen, I never made any money in my career because you always had the leverage and I didn’t.” But now the shoe is on the other foot so it’s time to turn the tables.
‘I don’t want to talk about a quote system that’s boxed me out and it’s not even true. It was easy to find that all of the men not just had quotes, they’d made an independent film and then a first [superhero] movie. They got paid seven times more than me for the first superhero movie. Then on the second one, they got paid more than me still,’ she continued.
‘It was an easy fight to say, “This can’t be. It super can’t be. And it really can’t be on Wonder Woman…” It was an interesting thing to do, but it was an easy thing to do in the fact I was dead serious. That I was like “If I can’t be victorious in this regard, then I’m letting everyone down.” If not me, who? So it became something I became very, very, very passionate about.’
Wonder Woman 1984 will be released simultaneously in theaters and on Warner Media’s HBO Max streaming service on December 25.
Pushed back: Wonder Woman 1984 will be released simultaneously in theaters and on Warner Media’s HBO Max streaming service on December 25