Being a female director in Hollywood has its ups and downs, from what I hear. Downside is, you get passed over a lot because you’re a minority and that’s how life is. The upside is that, if your movie sucks, nobody can kick you in the nuts. Trust me on that – I once directed the worst short film anyone never saw and didn’t walk for a month! That’s when most ladies behind the lenses find themselves in a damned-if-you-do/damned-if-you-don’t situation. According to Lexi Alexander, those situations pop up too much already, and she isn’t trying to make things worse for herself. That’s why when the question came up about her directing the new ‘Wonder Woman’ movie, she said “hell no!” Let’s see why she feels like that’s career suicide, and why she thinks WW might have her director already.
The ‘Punisher: War Zone’ chief already made one marginal superhero movie, and it starred a male character. Warner Bros. being dead set on hiring a lady to helm their ‘Wonder Woman’ project opens up a chance for the character to get the genuine female perspective. It’s also a trap made of spikes and dynamite and angry lions. At least that’s what Lexi Alexander said to Fast Company when asked if she’d captain that mission:
“Imagine the weight on my shoulders. How many male superhero movies fail? So now, we finally get Wonder Woman with a female director, imagine if it fails. And you have no control over marketing, over budget. So without any control, you carry the fucking weight of gender equality for both characters and women directors. No way.”
In talking with Forbes Magazine, she was asked to elaborate on these views. Lexi went on to say that Warner Bros. might even have their director already, but didn’t mention a name.
“If she says yes, everybody will be very happy, including me. Still, I don’t see at this point why anyone would say yes. There is huge pressure … If [a female director] does fail, then all of a sudden it’s ‘all women suck at directing.”
Ms. Alexander has very strong opinions about this film, the movie industry in general, and how the director can cover her ass to keep from being blamed if the thing fails.
“People need to understand the system…We have to demand transparency so we as a public can judge whether she f**cked up or not.”
The transparency she speaks of is a daily blog of some sort that itemizes the film’s progress and the director’s decisions. Alexander feels that proving that you “did your job” cushions you from all the indirect sabotage that can ruin a film. Like bad marketing.
I really respect her advocacy. In fact, I love it. But she really comes off as someone who has a hard time accepting fault. She’s not the only one who has the opinion that marketing failed her Punisher film. But I personally didn’t like it, so as far as I’m concerned, the movie failed me. Not to say that she can’t hack it in that genre. A former fighting champion and stuntwoman, she probably knows action better than most industry leads. Alexander could probably make a kickass Wonder Woman flick. But the fact that she badmouths the prospect, and won’t even consider doing it, chops away at that advocate cred. Her disillusionment with Hollywood seems to have gotten in the way of her drive to try making a legendary mark for female directors – something that a great WW movie is sure to do. You can’t be scared to fail at your crusade because trying is the only thing that might get you that win.
Now…about that mystery director Warner made an offer to? I think it’s Kathryn Bigelow. She’s so awesome that she’s my personal pick for the spot. ‘Point Break and ‘Hurt Locker‘ are reasons enough for why she gets my vote, but with ‘Zero Dark Thirty,’ she practically went to Iraq and choked Osama Bin Laden to death with her own fucking hands! Pay her what she wants and get your amazing film. The amazing film Lexi Alexander is too scared to make herself.
If we can get past this issue with the ladies for a second, let’s address the question on lots of people’s minds: Why is it so important to hire a woman to direct this film instead of just focusing on hiring the best director for the job? For one, it’s not important. It’s a great bit of novelty and an inspired marketing pitch (for once). It’s also a good faith element for women directors who know they’ve got an extra job to vie for in an industry that ignores them. Secondly, it’s very important. Not only do you want a great action movie with a cool story, but it’s pretty damned special to get a woman’s perspective behind a movie called ‘Wonder Woman.’ And if the damn thing fails, it fails. Screw it. Nobody’s hanging Martin Campbell for fucking up ‘Green Lantern.’ But he probably got kicked in the nuts a lot.
Via – Fast Company