A few months ago I remember talking with my sister-in-law — who lives in Los Angeles and also works in entertainment — about Wonder Woman and its director Patty Jenkins. She shared my excitement about the upcoming film, but was worried because of rumors of extensive reshoots. As my sister-in-law reminded me, Wonder Woman was to be the first female directed superhero blockbuster, and she was concerned that the rumors could cause the film to underperform at the box office. Well, as we all now know, our worries were moot. The final movie was not only critically well received, but it had an estimated $100.5 million opening weekend in the U.S. Even better, there was only one scene in Wonder Woman that was reshoot after production had initially wrapped, and it wasn't that big of a change at all.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Jenkins addressed the rumors of reshoots head on. Oh, and don’t worry — there are no major spoilers ahead. In the movie, there's a scene where we see Wonder Woman (played by the incredible Gal Gadot) heading towards the World War I front line along with Steve Trevor (Chris Pine), and Wonder Woman stops to ask why two horses being whipped. One of her comrades then informs her that the whipping is in effort to get the horses to hurry. It's one of many touching moments in the film, where you see that Diana cares not just about humans, but animals too. And, as it turns out, this was the one scene that was added post production.
"I wanted to ramp that tension as much as possible, and, unfortunately, we didn’t have it," Jenkins said of her decision. "That scene was just a slightly tense scene of them walking. I was like 'I need her to see some brutality.' So, we added her seeing the horses being whipped."
Yep, calling all haters: Wonder Woman didn't go through endless reshoots in order to become the iconic movie that it is. Only one scene was reshot post production, and, in my opinion, it was a necessary change.
In fact, the reshot scene was actually in the original script, according to Jenkins. "What you saw is exactly the movie that we were always making," she explained. "We replaced that one scene with a reshot scene, and we didn’t change the order of a single scene."
Compared to the amount of post-production reshoots some movies go through — reshoots that can often change the entire ending of the film — it's safe to say that the Wonder Woman you see on screen is exactly what Jenkins had envisioned from the start. Which only goes to show how she was clearly the best person to direct the movie, despite the many people who expressed a lack of confidence in her ability to carry the film with so little experience directing blockbusters.
Now that Wonder Woman has delivered at the box office, hopefully the industry will take notice and put more female directors in charge of future superhero movies. And, hopefully, those who have been hating on the film for whatever reason will take this as their cue to find something better to do with their time.