Wonder Woman has been one of the biggest hits of the 2017 summer movie season. Not only has it earned near critical acclaim, but it's also made over $780 million worldwide and counting making it the highest-grossing movie directed by a woman ever. The movie's performance has been a big boost for the DC Extended Universe, and Warner Bros has been especially pleased with this. So much so that the studio is reportedly planning to launch a campaign for Wonder Woman to get some Academy Awards attention, specifically in the Best Picture and Best Director categories.
In order to accomplish this, Warner Bros is supposedly planning to drop a lot of money on Wonder Woman advertising, watermarked DVDs, special screenings and sending talent across the globe to remind Academy voters how much work was poured into this movie, especially by director Patty Jenkins. Variety also reported that Warner Bros wants to "reintroduce" Wonder Woman in the fall season, i.e. presumably re-release it in theaters for a limited time. Due to recent Academy membership expansion, which have added more younger members and diversity, Warner Bros evidently believes that it has a good shot of scoring Wonder Woman some Oscars recognition, although the studio will also be dedicating resources to plug Christopher Nolan's latest movie Dunkirk for the Academy Awards.
When it comes to technical categories like Best Visual Effects, superhero movies have gotten a fair amount of nominations over the years and even a few wins. In fact, Wonder Woman's DCEU predecessor, Suicide Squad, won the Oscar for Best Makeup and Hairstyling. But in the top echelon of categories, these types of blockbusters rarely get any attention. The Dark Knight has arguably been the most successful on this front, walking away with a Best Supporting Actor win thanks to Heath Ledger's performance as The Joker. But even Christopher Nolan's second Batman movie didn't get Best Picture and Best Director nominations. More recently, Deadpool was nominated for Best Motion Picture and Best Actor in the Comedy and Musical realm at the Golden Globes, but it received no Oscars nods. With such a track record, Wonder Woman faces an uphill battle, particularly if, as the Variety article noted, if the next DCEU film, Justice League, which includes Gal Gadot's Diana Prince, underperforms the fall/winter.
Nevertheless, given how incredibly successful Wonder Woman has been for nearly two full months, it's commendable that Warner Bros appears willing to plug it as an Oscars contender. With all the buzz Diana of Themyscira's standalone movie has received both as an enjoyable blockbuster and as an empowering movie in a genre where there have been few female-led stories, it's important to ride this wave of positive reception for as long as possible. That doesn't guarantee that it will win any of the Academy Awards it's aiming for by any means, but putting in the effort is still important.
Wonder Woman is still playing in theaters, and Diana will return in Justice League on November 17.