When you look back through cinematic history there have been very few casting choices that have been as perfect as the casting of actress Gal Gadot as one of DC’s leading superheroes – Wonder Woman. Not only does Gadot have a strong resemblance to the Wonder Woman that many of us grew up reading about in comics but spend just one moment talking to Gadot’s co-stars from the Wonder Woman franchise and they will tell you that Gadot also embodies the love and compassion that the Amazonian superhero also portrays on screen.
Therefore it is little wonder that Wonder Woman 1984 is one of the most eagerly anticipated films of 2020 and that Gadot is one of the most sought after stars. She smiles broadly when asked about what it was like to once again reprise the role of Diana Prince and also juggle the responsibilities of being a producer this time around.
“In the first one I was completely overwhelmed by the fact that we were shooting a movie that was centred completely around my character,” says Gadot after thinking about the question for a moment. “I was the title of the movie so I always felt that I was the little girl looking at the mountain and thinking ‘oh my God how am I going to climb all the way up.’ But then, it did take a lot of work, but I realised that this is something that I can do, especially when I had partners like Patty Jenkins and our amazing cast. On the second one I felt like I had a totally different experience.”
“First of all being a producer you are involved from A to Z,” she says continuing. “You are helping cast the new characters, build the new story and even helping pick what location we are going to be shooting in. There is so much more to do, it is like exploring a whole new world, a world of movie-making and that is super fascinating for me. I have to say that I think the fact that Patty and I are super close and in this together, and we talk about everything as it is, it felt like we were on the same page. So the producing part of it all was super educating and fascinating. The experience was delightful because this movie was so ambitious and so challenging and now there are so many more things I now know that I would never have learned if I weren’t a producer on this movie.”
Of course aside from producing Gadot also found herself right in the thick of things with the action sequences of the film… an element that she seems to really enjoy. “Patty made a point of wanting a minimal amount of CGI in the film,” explains Gadot. “That meant that we had to do much more and our stunt team had to do much more and we had to build rigs that most people don’t use any more because they use CGI for all their stunts. So for the mall scene we had an entire mall dressed up like it was the 1980s and we had the entire mall to ourselves. The ceiling was rigged with wires and stuff all around it and it took a lot of time to create and establish all of that and it took a lot of time to rehearse all of that. We have the best stunt team in the world and they have done an amazing job making sure everything looks as real as possible so when you watch the movie you can see the difference. You can see that it is all real, you can see the weight and the speed and the reactions in the faces because they are real faces. It was great and I am very proud of it. It was a lot of work but I am proud of it.”
One of the new faces in Wonder Woman 1984 is comedic actress Kristen Wiig who takes on the role of Cheetah despite it being a serious role. “It was the best,” says Gadot before the question is even finished. “Kristen is the best! She is so funny and such a great friend. She is so generous and she just made the whole process so delightful for me – we literally did like SNL skits while we were shooting, while they were changing sets and shots and whatever. She is funny, she is smart, she is just amazing. I love her so much. She is so talented, she was given such a tough arc to play and she absolutely nailed it She went from being the insecure, vulnerable, shy person to this super vicious, strong, dark and scary character and she gave all different colours and different ranges – she is so talented She is the best!”
To finish off Gadot discusses why the character of Wonder Woman resinates with so many people. “Wonder Woman stands for love and for compassion and for empathy and peace,” she says. “I think that is something that we all love and connect to. Her biggest weapon and her biggest tool is her heart and that is why people like her so much… she is good!”
Wonder Woman is in Australian cinemas on Boxing Day.