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Countless blockbusters were delayed this year, as studios waited for theaters to open back up before releasing their massive movies. Warner Bros. is making an unprecedented move with Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman 1984, which will be released this month in both theaters and straight to homes via HBO Max. The long-awaited sequel will also bring us back to Diana home on Themyscira, and Jenkins recently spoke to how the sequel provided the "perfect" reason.
The original Wonder Woman movie served as an origin story for Diana Prince, as she grew from a young Amazon woman into a superhero. But when she left her home she was banished, and forbidden to return. But Patty Jenkins will bring us back to Themyscira in Wonder Woman 1984 thanks to a flashback featuring the Amazon Olympics. Jenkins recently spoke to a group of journalists including CinemaBlend's own Eric Eisenberg, where she shared why this was the optimum way to go back to the franchise's roots. When speaking to the groundbreaking nature of the Amazon sequences in the first film, she went on to explain:
I do know certain things about why people responded to it so much. I do hear that people saying they felt like they'd never seen [something like the Themyscira sequence] before. I know that too. Although, because I'm the person that made it I'm so far down the rabbit hole. I wasn't thinking about that while I made it. I am friends with all kinds of badass women, so I was like, 'Sure, of course there's a ton of bad-ass women! Let's let's do it.' And so when people were like saying that they hadn't seen that reflected before, I was like, Oh, 'I guess that's true. I guess you've not ever seen a female battle sequence before,' but I wasn't thinking about it at the time. It was both something that I didn't plan on putting in the second movie, and then I was like, 'Whoa, it's going to be weird not to have them,' but I also ended up realizing why we had to have them in the second movie when I realized that lots and lots of people see the second movie who haven't seen the first movie.
Wonder Woman was a groundbreaking movie for a variety of ways. It proved the power of the DCEU, as well as the appeal of female-led superhero movies at the box office. The action sequences involving the Amazons were thrilling visual experiences, and a flashback brought the opportunity to recreate that magic, while also introducing Diana's home to newcomers who were first being introduced to Gal Gadot's hero in Wonder Woman 1984.
The original Wonder Woman is currently available on HBO Max, which will also be the home of 1984 for a month after its release. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.
Patty Jenkins' comments to CinemaBlend's Eric Eisenberg and others shows how the legacy of the original Wonder Woman movie helped to inform Patty Jenkins' process with 1984. The long-awaited sequel will be telling an entirely different story set decades later, but going back to Themyscira was still a priority for a number of reasons. The Amazon olympics are shown in the sequel's trailers, which will likely also feature the return of Robin Wright's Antiope.
Later in Patty Jenkins' same conversation about Wonder Woman 1984, the acclaimed filmmaker went on to explain how the flashback sequence on Diana's home also helped to provide necessary exposition. Because while the hardcore fandom has re-watched the original a number of times since its 2017 release, there will also be some audience member who haven't seen the acclaimed origin movie. As Jenkins put it,
So I was like, 'Oh yeah, if you hadn't seen the first movie, you don't understand who she is and that she comes from a mythical land. You would be very confused by what was happening. So I ended up finding the perfect reason and I love the fact that there's a lesson that she has to learn that she still hasn't learned, as is true for all of us.
Wonder Woman 1984 is obviously shot as a specific period piece, decades after Gal Gadot's title character left her home and began her life in the world of man. But despite this time setting, Patty Jenkins was still able to incorporate many beloved elements of the original. For the Amazons it was a flashback, while Chris Pine's Steve Trevor will also be revived through mysterious means.
There's also plenty of new elements being introduced in Wonder Woman 1984, including Diana's epic golden armor. Some new characters will also be making their DCEU debut, namely Pedro Pascal's Maxwell Lord and Kristen Wiig's Cheetah. The latter villain provided its own set of challenges for Jenkins, so we'll have to see how it all pays off.