This summer, Warner Bros.’ highly anticipated Wonder Woman film boldly shifts Diana away from the World War II origin of her comics counterpart and instead hurls her into trenches of World War I. However, if you thought the reason for this change was solely linked to the centenary of the United States’ entry into the conflict, you would be mistaken. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Wonder Woman screenwriter Allan Heinberg revealed that it was the very enormity of the conflict that appealed most.
“We are in a very WWI world today with nationalism and how it would take very little to start a global conflict,” he said, adding, “It’s the first time we had an automated war. The machine gun was a [relatively] new invention. Gas was used for the first time. New horrors were unleashed every day.”
The film’s director Patty Jenkins admitted that she was hesitant about the move. “At first, I questioned it because it wasn’t her actual origin story, but very quickly I saw the genius behind it,” she shared.
“World War I is the first time that civilization as we know it was finding its roots, but it’s not something that we [Americans] really know the history of,” the director continued. “Even the way that it was unclear [to American eyes] who was in the right of WWI is a really interesting parallel to this time. Then you take a god with a moral compass and a moral belief system, and you drop them into this world, there are questions about women’s rights, about a mechanized war where you don’t see who you are killing.”
Starring Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Lucy Davis, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Danny Huston, Elena Anaya, Ewen Bremner, Saïd Taghmaoui and David Thewlis and directed by Patty Jenkins, Wonder Woman hits theaters Friday.