How Wonder Woman 1984’s Pedro Pascal Approached His Role As Maxwell Lord

Pedro Pascal as Maxwell Lord in Wonder Woman 1984 (2020)

Wonder Woman 1984 will place Diana Prince in the ‘80s and, while big cell phones and outrageous fashion are parts of that experience, she’ll be occupied with other things. The sequel pits her against two formidable enemies in Barbara Ann Minerva a.k.a. Cheetah and business tycoon Maxwell Lord. Pedro Pascal will play the latter, and the actor recently noted that he won’t be getting into as much action as co-stars Gal Gadot and Kristen Wiig:

With Wonder Woman, [Gal Gadot and Kristen Wiig] are doing the action, baby, and I'm doing the schm-acting!

Based on what we’ve seen of Maxwell Lord so far, it looks like Pedro Pascal is definitely going to be chewing up plenty of scenery. This is a change of pace from his more reserved roles on shows like The Mandalorian, though the actor didn’t have too much trouble adjusting to the over-the-top character. During his recent interview with EW, he contrasted the role from his character on Narcos, saying that he didn’t have to “invent” too much for the performance this time around:

I didn't have to take something and figure out how to put more flesh onto it. I had to achieve getting into the skin of what was being presented to me. For me, Colombia was almost the central character, and then I was allowed to make him depressive and to tonally interpret what the character was. And in this case [on Wonder Woman 1984], there was just so much for me to meet rather than to invent.

Pascal seems to have a great time with this and credits director and co-writer Patty Jenkins for the experience. Though he also points out that the filmmaker doesn’t hesitate to ask for more from her actors:

That was an incredible delight and challenge because Patty Jenkins is a director who loves actors and when she sees she can ask for more, she does. And there isn't anyone better, in my experience, to give more to.

Playing a villain, especially in a superhero film, can be a difficult task, as actors still want to make their characters relatable in some form. And of course, they also want them to stack up against the hero(es). Luckily, Pedro Pascal and Patty Jenkins appear to have done their due diligence when it came to developing Maxwell Lord. In prepping for the role, Pascal even went as far as turning his script into a “pop-art scrapbook” as a way of getting inside the character’s mind.

Fans will finally be able to see Pedro Pascal’s performance as Lord when Wonder Woman 1984 hits both theaters and HBO Max on Christmas Day, and the actor couldn’t be happier about it. It’ll be fun to see how his prep translates to the performance we see on screen.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.