Before Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Gal Gadot was mostly known to audiences for her small role in the Fast & Furious franchise. So there was some skepticism about her ability to lead her own film and carry the mantle of such an important character. While she was a standout in Batman v Superman, she really got to show why she was the right choice for the Amazonian princess in last year's Wonder Woman. The film was a huge hit and one of the better films of the year. While Gal Gadot knocked it out of the park, there was one scene in particular that she and the creative team struggled to get right, and we're about to get into spoilers if you still haven't caught the flick. Gal Gadot explained why the scene, which happens after Wonder Woman kills General Ludendorff and the war doesn't end, was so tricky, saying:
One week we were struggling. It was the tower scene when, after Wonder Woman kills General Ludendorff and she thinks she's killed Ares. She can't understand why everybody was still fighting... Because what Steve is saying is that not everyone are good, and people are both good and bad. And realization for Wonder Woman is that her mother was right. She's devastated about this reveal. But the audience shares Steve's point of view because we all understand men are bad and good. And I was really worried, because there's a fine line when playing some naiveté that you don't want to play dumb. It took us a day to figure out the right balance and tone to that scene.
This scene was one of the more emotional ones in the film as it shatters Diana's entire worldview. Up until that point she was singular in her focus and belief that Ludendorff was Ares and killing him would instantly set things right. Wonder Woman was sure that men would not act so cruelly towards each other without an evil influence guiding their actions. She believed it in her bones and finding out that the real world isn't as black and white as she was led to believe on Themyscira was difficult to take. As an actress, Gal Gadot had to convey fear, devastation and confusion. That needed to come off as a product of naiveté and not stupidity. For the audience, we know and are reminded daily that not all people are good, so seeing someone who doesn't get that could come off as silly, dumb or unrealistic if the tone wasn't right.
Watching the scene you can see her go through a whole range of emotions, confusion, fear, panic, denial, disgust, realization and heartbreak. That is an awful lot to cycle through in a matter of minutes and it needed to come off as genuine. Instead of seeming dumb, Diana comes across as very naïve, but also someone who is still hopeful and idealistic. As Gal Gadot explained to Entertainment Weekly, this was a delicate balance to strike. But under the direction of Patty Jenkins, she figured out the right way to approach this scene and execute one of the film's more emotional moments. Chris Pine was also a big part of this scene. As Steve Trevor, he never viewed Diana as stupid, but was just sad for her and frustrated that the world could not be as simple as she believed.
Despite their struggle, Gal Gadot and Patty Jenkins delivered on this pivotal scene. As the audience, we mourn Wonder Woman's loss of innocence and empathize with the harsh reality that slaying one evil entity cannot solve the ills of the world. Diana's heartbreak here is why it is such a big deal later on, when she decides to stay and continue fighting for an imperfect world. Having proved herself in the role and the popularity of the character, Gal Gadot will be donning the bracelets again in Wonder Woman 2, which hits theaters next year. For all the latest comic book goodness hitting movie screens this year, check out our release guide.