Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman stays true to the comics and the 70’s TV series in at least one way – the revealing, skin-tight costume. But while many have criticized Wonder Woman’s skimpy outfit in the upcoming movie, Gal Gadot says people just fail to understand the way her character sees gender roles. And, she adds in a new interview – that costume doesn’t hurt feminism, but is a part of it, with Diana Prince – AKA Wonder Woman – being a strong role model for young girls.
Gal Gadot, the 32-year-old actress and model from Israel, got to wear the Wonder Woman costume for the first time on Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justince. At the age of 18, Gal won the Miss Israel competition, and went on to the Miss Universe competition in 2004. She later joined the Israeli army, then started studying law, when she was asked by a casting director to audition for a role in James Bond’s Quantum of Solace. She didn’t get the part, but eventually landed a role in the fourth Fast and Furious film.
Speaking with the New York Times, Gal Gadot reveals that shortly before she got her role as Wonder Woman, she was just about ready to leave acting forever.
“I got to a point, just before Wonder Woman when I had so many almosts – great audition, great camera tests, but always the runner-up – that I was ready to give up and go back to law school.”
While Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justince was mostly hated by the critics, many of them did point out Gal Gadot’s performance as one of its highlights. But Gal, as Wonder Woman, had to endure a lot of criticism as well. Even though her intention was to be a positive role model for young girls, including Gal’s own daughter, some have said that a heroine who wears such a revealing costume, cannot be a role model for girls.
Back in December 2016, Wonder Woman’s costume was even debated over at the United Nations, as reported on the Inquisitr. Earlier that year, Wonder Woman was chosen as an “honorary ambassador for the empowerment of women” by the U.N., being a symbol for gender equality.
Gal Gadot, along with the original TV Wonder Woman, Lynda Carter, both attended a ceremony at the U.N. headquarters to receive the prestigious award. But feminist groups, U.N. staff, and diplomats have all complained that choosing a fictional character, and one that is so over-sexualized, is an insult to real-life female activists. Eventually, the U.N. decided to dump Wonder Woman as it’s honorary ambassador.
Back then, Gal Gadot argued that it’s certainly possible for Wonder Woman to be both strong and sexy. She refused to accept the call for Wonder Woman to “cover up.” Now, months after that controversy, Gal adds a feminist point of view to the debate.
“I think as a feminist, you should be able to wear whatever you like! In any case, there is such a misunderstanding of the concept. Feminism is about equality and choice and freedom.
And the writers, Patty [Jenkins – the film’s director] and myself all figured that the best way to show that is to show Diana as having no awareness of social roles. She has no gender boundaries. To her, everyone is equal.”
As is often the case, Gal Gadot also had to fight off criticism from the other side – male Wonder Woman fans on the internet, who claimed her Wonder Woman wasn’t “sexy enough,” and that her “boobs were too small” for the role. Gal manages to laugh those remarks off these days – but it’s clear the Wonder Woman movie is controversial even before its release.
The stand-alone Wonder Woman movie is set to be released next month, on June 2, when we will finally be able to see if, amidst all the debates, there’s also a good super-hero movie underneath.
[Featured Image by Warner Bros.]