James Cameron refuses to back down from his earlier comments about Wonder Woman that fans, as well as director Patty Jenkins, took umbrage with. In his initial comments over the summer, he said Wonder Woman was "a step backwards" because it depicted a physically attractive woman as the lead in an action movie.
"Yes, I'll stand by that," Cameron told The Hollywood Reporter in a follow-up. "I mean [Gal Gadot] was Miss Israel, and she was wearing a kind of bustier costume that was very form-fitting. She's absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. To me, that's not breaking ground."
The famed director would go on to again say his character of Sarah Connor, and Linda Hamilton's portrayal of her in 1991 was more impactful because "she wasn't treated as a sex object. There was nothing sexual about her character. It was about angst, it was about will, it was about determination. She was crazy, she was complicated. She wasn't there to be liked or ogled, but she was central, and the audience loved her by the end of the film."
Of course, Patty Jenkins' argument seems to be the same for Diana in Wonder Woman. Yes, she has obvious physical beauty, and has sexual agency, but she's not a sex object. While Cameron says again, "I didn't think there was anything groundbreaking in Wonder Woman," but that he "thought it was a good film," he then acknowledges Diana's big difference to the way women are typically portrayed in action films in his next thought.
"I'm not walking it back, but I will add a little detail to it, which is: I like the fact that, sexually, she had the upper hand with the male character, which I thought was fun," he said.
Interestingly, Cameron only directly refers to Sarah Connor as "what Linda created in 1991," specifying that he's talking about the character in Terminator 2: Judgement Day. In the original 1984 film, Connor was not the butt-kicking warrior. Instead, she was the hunted, and the lust object of a man from the future who was there to protect (and eventually impregnate) her.
Patty Jenkins has officially signed on to make a second Wonder Woman film with Gal Gadot starring for a December 13, 2019 release. Cameron will re-team (as producer) with Linda Hamilton for a Terminator sequel under director Tim Miller (Deadpool).