As the excitement builds for Wonder Woman 's 2017 theatrical release, there's a refreshed buzz around a different kind of origin story on the famous Amazon warrior that's caught my eye. Reports of a biopic on William Moulton Marston, the man who created the character of Wonder Woman, have surfaced, and let me tell you: this film would push some awesome boundaries. Currently titled "Professor Marston & The Wonder Women," the biopic would feature Luke Evans as Marston, Rebecca Hall as his wife, Elizabeth, and Bella Heathcote as a former student of Marston's who is also in a romantic relationship with the married couple. We can safely expect to not only see the events that lead to the creation of Wonder Woman, arguably the most identifiable and beloved female superhero in pop culture, but we'll also get a closer look at the relationship that was foundational to her existence.
An exploration of a functional polyamorous relationship certainly feels novel, especially in the context of a biopic; more intriguing still is that this relationship is deeply entwined with the Wonder Woman mythology. Sure, Wonder Woman is not polyamorous herself — although the recent announcement that she identifies as a lesbian was cause for celebration— but this angle of her inception makes me think Wonder Woman may not only be the most recognizable, but also the most historically progressive.
Marston himself was very progressive, so it's only natural that he would create a superhero so unique they would be nearly unmatched in the comic book pantheon. His views, ones that were intrinsic to him at the time of Wonder Woman's creation, have always been favorable and focused on women. A recent NPR piece covering the release of a book on the history of Wonder Woman explored Marston's relationship to the suffragette movement. Intriguingly, Marston was himself a feminist, shaped by the suffragette movement and struck by early suffragettes in their fight for their right to vote. And while Marston was so struck by the early feminist ideology, he was also involved in a rather unconventional and progressive relationship with his wife and his former student. His wife was an inventor in her own right. His lover, Byrne, was a journalist who wrote for Family Circle magazine. This was an intelligent, ambitious, talented trio whose lives I unreservedly think deserve to be adapted for a film.
While this is the kind of life worth bringing to the big screen, especially given our hyper-fanatical love of all things superhero, I hope that the deeper nuances of Marston's life don't get glossed over or misrepresented. Something tells me that with Transparent 's Jill Soloway acting as executive producer, "Professor Marston & The Wonder Woman" could be a groundbreaking biopic.
Image: Warner Bros. Pictures