Long before her turn as Mockingbird on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and her starring role in Fox’s The Orville, actress Adrianne Palicki was set to bring Wonder Woman to life on the small screen in a pilot for NBC. That pilot, of course, failed to land a series order and left Palicki devastated for some time thereafter.
Back in 2011, it was announced that Palicki, fresh off her time on Friday Night Lights, was set to star as Wonder Woman in a pilot for NBC. David E. Kelley (Ally McBeal, Boston Legal) was behind the pilot that saw Palicki play corporate executive Diana Themyscira as she fought crime in Los Angeles as her alter ego and tried to maintain her secret identity as Diana Prince. While the pilot never officially aired, footage did leak out and it quickly became apparent why it never made it to series.
Still, despite the critical reaction to the pilot, Palicki struggled knowing that the project wouldn’t be moving forward. In an interview with The Wrap, the actress revealed she didn’t take the news well: “I was devastated for a while after, I’m not going to lie.”
So, what went wrong with the pilot? While others, such as Joss Whedon, have stated that Kelley wasn’t necessarily the right match for an adaption of Wonder Woman, the actress has a different idea for why things didn’t pan out, and it ultimately comes down to timing.
“We were a year or two too soon,” Palicki said. “It was right before the main pop of Marvel movies and television series. The movies [had started coming] out, but it wasn’t like [today, where] that’s what makes money now — that’s what people want to see. It was a little too soon, it was a little early.”
These days, Wonder Woman is starring on the big screen alongside her Justice League counterparts. Gal Gadot, the current Wonder Woman of note, will next reprise her role in Justice League, which sees the nascent superhero team form to fend off an alien invasion. The CW was planning a prequel titled Amazon, set to join the ranks of Arrow, The Flash and Supergirl, but that project is dead with the network not looking to redevelop the potential series for the time being.
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