Filmmaker Lexi Alexander Says A Woman’s Been Asked To Direct ‘Wonder Woman’, Explains Why She Herself Wouldn’t
'Wonder Woman' will be the first solo female superhero film to grace the big screen since 2005's best-forgotten 'Elektra,' and with fans clamoring for a female superhero movie, it has the distinct pleasure of having a metric ton of expectations placed on its figurative shoulders. WB has made the right call in deciding to hire a female director, and one of the names that's been tossed round online is Lexi Alexander, who previously directed 'Punisher: War Zone' -- but you can go ahead and cross her name off the list because according to her, she's definitely not interested in the job.
First and foremost, as she told Forbes, Alexander hasn't been approached by Warner Bros. to direct the film -- but she is a name that's been mentioned on wishlists online since WB announced its intention to hire a female director, and she makes it clear that she thinks someone else has already been offered the job anyway:
If she says yes, everybody will be very happy, including me. I don’t see at this point why anyone would say yes. There is huge pressure…. If [a female director] does fail, then all of a sudden it’s ‘All women suck at directing.’
She sort of has a point, although her comment is a bit extreme -- then again, the reaction could be extreme. Here's the thing: we all want the 'Wonder Woman' movie to be great, but the truth is that DC and WB's current vision/tone/direction for their films doesn't seem promising. So far we've only seen 'Man of Steel,' and it was a bit of a drag. The studio is intent on distancing themselves from Marvel, focusing on more serious films with little to no humor or fun. The mere concept of their entire slate of films sometimes seems exhausting rather than exciting.
It seems more likely that the 'Wonder Woman' movie would fail than the 'Captain Marvel' film, even if both were directed by women -- and not because they were directed by women, but because of the studios and creative systems behind them. And so the reaction that would follow ("All women suck at directing") if 'Wonder Woman' fails would be hugely detrimental, of course, and no female director wants that on her shoulders, so it depends on how you interpret Lexi Alexander's comments. I might not want to direct 'Wonder Woman,' either.
In an interview with Fast Company, Alexander further commented:
Imagine the weight on my shoulders. How many male superhero movies fail? So now, we finally get Wonder Woman with a female director; imagine if it fails. And you have no control over marketing, over budget. So without any control, you carry the f—ing weight of gender equality for both characters and women directors. No way.
There's been a hugely negative reaction to Alexander's comments online today, mostly because she spoke out without having been offered the job at all, but I think she raises an interesting and candid point about the pressures of being a female director -- and I don't think she could be criticized for being honest.