When it comes to what’s been happening around a potential third Wonder Woman movie, we may need a Lasso of Truth to get to the facts. Following Gal Gadot talking about developing a new movie with the new heads of DC Studios, unnamed sources at the studio are saying something very different indeed.
Both Deadline and Variety are citing unnamed sources saying that there are, in fact, no plans to make a third Wonder Woman movie, adding that there is no DC Studios project connected to the Wonder Woman mythos planned beyond the Paradise Lost series targeted for release on Max. It’s a clear pushback from the studio against Gadot’s commentary that she, James Gunn, and Peter Safran would be developing a third Wonder Woman feature together, even if no-one from the studio was named (or even directly quoted). This raises three possibilities:
- The studio lied to Gadot, potentially to maintain good relations with her as she agreed to cameos in both The Flash and Shazam: Fury of the Gods
- Gadot lied to the press, perhaps as a way to force the issue with Warner Bros. Discovery and/or DC Studios, while also raising her profile ahead of the release of her Netflix movie Heart of Stone
- A third, different thing that we’ll get to in a minute
Any of the above are possible! After all, it’s not as if actors and studios haven’t done variations on this dance before. Remember all of the public back-and-forth about a solo Deadpool movie — including the leak of some secret test footage — before it happened? Or Henry Cavill’s high profile return to the role of Superman for what ultimately amounted to just one brief cameo at the end of Black Adam? Anyone who’s paid attention to the public shenanigans that push the “behind the scenes” politicking of movie making to the forefront can’t be too surprised by the possibility that there’s some bad faith PR happening somewhere here.
(That said, it’s worth noting that there’s no direct parallel between Henry Cavill and Gal Gadot’s situation; Cavill’s return-that-wasn’t seemed to be a casualty of conflict over control of DC between Dwayne Johnson and the eventual leadership of James Gunn and Peter Safran, while Gunn and Safran have been in the big chairs for the entirety of the Gadot situation; they’re the ones who cancelled existing plans for Wonder Woman 3 back in December last year. This one can’t be blamed on confusion over who’s in charge.)
As tempting as it is to be cynical and assume that one side is definitely lying here — again, it’s Hollywood, so that’s a guess that is very likely to be the right one — I’m hung up on the third option: that this is all the slow unraveling of a plan that, if it had worked out, could have made a lot of people very happy.
Picture a world in which Gadot made a surprise cameo in Paradise Lost, with that project setting up a Wonder Woman feature reintroducing the actor as the hero in the new DCU; imagine the excitement that would have generated for Paradise Lost, Wonder Woman, and DC Studios in general, had it happened and surprised everyone! In this fantasy scenario, Gadot would be right to think that she’s developing a third Wonder Woman movie with Gunn and Safran, and DC would of course want to downplay any such talk in favor of pointing people towards the in-development Paradise Lost.
Of course, Gadot saying the quiet part out loud and launching an (unintentional?) war of words with the studio all but guarantees that any such plan, even if it had existed, isn’t likely to happen any time soon. The irony of the whole situation is that, no matter what the scenario actually had been, no matter the actual explanation, Gadot’s public announcement of a Wonder Woman 3 that DC wasn’t ready to talk about for whatever reason all but ensures that we’re not going to see that movie anytime soon.
Gadot might have played a warrior turned diplomat onscreen, but turns out, she doesn’t quite live up to that diplomat aspect of the hero just yet. If only she had gotten that third movie…