Patty Jenkins wasn’t about to let James Cameron have the last word after he criticized her blockbuster hit Wonder Woman in an interview published Thursday.
Jenkins took to Twitter late Thursday evening to take the Titanic director to task for calling Wonder Woman “a step backwards” for women in Hollywood.
“James Cameron’s inability to understand what Wonder Woman is, or stands for, to women all over the world is unsurprising as, though he is a great filmmaker, he is not a woman,” she wrote in part. “Strong women are great. His praise of my film Monster, and our portrayal of a strong yet damaged woman was so appreciated. But if women have to always be hard, tough and troubled to be strong, and we aren’t free to be multidimensional or celebrate an icon of women everywhere because she is attractive and loving, then we haven’t come very far have we.”
— Patty Jenkins (@PattyJenks) August 25, 2017
In his interview with The Guardian, Cameron quipped that “all of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman has been so misguided.”
“She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!” he added, referencing his character Sarah Connor from the Terminator series as a means of comparison. “Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefits of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”
In her Twitter retort toward Cameron, Jenkins took issue with his suggestion that strong female leads have to fit a certain rubric of imperfection in order to be successful.
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“I believe women can and should be EVERYTHING just like male lead characters should be,” Jenkins continued. “There is no right and wrong kind of powerful woman. And the massive female audience who made the film a hit it is, can surely choose and judge their own icons of progress.”
Wonder Woman has grossed more than $800 million worldwide since its early June release, according to Box Office Mojo.