It’s easy to forget that before The Avengers, Joss Whedon was just a niche sci-fi director with a fiercely loyal fan base. And before he became a bigwig with Marvel, he was signed to handle a top DC property that crashed and burned in development hell.
Whedon’s love of strong female characters is well documented from his days running Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and his dream project has always been Wonder Woman. But DC pulled the plug in the early-to-mid 2000s during the scripting phase, and Whedon moved on to much greener (see: money) pastures at Marvel.
But what about his long-dead Wonder Woman script? Whedon chatted with Deadline about the project, and revealed that he didn’t even get a call back from DC after he turned in his second draft. Ouch.
“It’s not easy. It’s not a simple trick. The Marvel properties with the exception of Batman, who has often been described as the Marvel character in the DC universe, are much easier to translate to a modern audience. Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern are so far above us and their powers are amorphous and that makes it 10 times harder.
Even when you’re doing a fight, it’s harder to write a fight for Thor than it is for Captain America because he’s that much stronger. I loved what I was doing on Wonder Woman. Clearly I was an excited party of one. I wrote the movie, I felt good about the characters, the structure needed work, I did another outline, they read it and were done. There wasn’t even a phone call.”
After seeing Whedon’s fantastic take on The Avengers, it makes you wonder what he could’ve done with a big budget for his true comic passion project. Just think how different the landscape would be if DC had locked in Whedon early, who could potentially be prepping a Justice League movie right about now.
Oh, what could have been ...