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Wonder Woman has been out for less than a week, but already it has audiences everywhere weak in the knees. But considering it’s the character’s first foray into the world of solo features, you may not know that much about her.
If you’re looking for a few facts to throw at your friends as you wait for the theatre lights to dim, then I’ve got you covered. Here we go.
Creator William Moulton Marston invented part of the lie detector
William Moulton Marston was not only a writer: he was also an inventor and psychologist. After graduating with his PhD in psychology from Harvard, Marston created the systolic blood pressure test, which eventually became one component of the modern polygraph test.
It is said that this background helped Marston shape Wonder Woman’s Lasso of Truth. He allegedly also drew inspiration from ‘feminine charm’ and women’s ability to discern the truth.
His wife Elizabeth suggested he make her a woman
When William decided he was to create a superhero, his first thought was that they would beat their enemies with love rather than violence. When presented with this idea, his wife Elizabeth had only one amendment: that she be a woman.
Elizabeth also had a hand in the creation of the systolic blood pressure test. She suggested to Marston the link between emotion and blood pressure, saying that when she was angry or excited, her blood pressure rose.
She did that.
Wonder Woman was moulded to promote ‘feminine’ qualities
Marston was concerned with the way women and girls were rejecting traditionally feminine qualities like tenderness and kindness because they were deemed weak. He wanted to show how love and nurture can be just as powerful as brute force.
“Women’s strong qualities have become despised because of their weakness. The obvious remedy is to create a feminine character with all the strength of Superman plus all the allure of a good and beautiful woman,” he wrote.
Thus he created Wonder Woman — a character whose strength rests in her love for the world and mankind.
Wonder Woman’s bracelets were inspired by Marston’s live-in girlfriend
William and his wife Elizabeth were in a polyamorous relationship with Olive Byrne, who lived with them. Olive was the daughter of Ethel Byrne, who opened the first US birth control clinic with her sister Margaret Sanger.
Wonder Woman’s famous Bracelets of Submission were inspired by Byrne’s own bracelets, and likely had something to do with the Marston’s involvement with BDSM.
Wonder Woman is bisexual
Marston was notorious for hiding “sapphic undertones” in the early comics, and current Wonder Woman comic writer Greg Rucka confirmed last year that Diana of Themyscira is bisexual. Is anyone surprised?
Rucka says Diana’s native island, where Amazonian warriors live in paradise, is what formed her idea of sexual identity.
“You’re supposed to be able to live happily. You’re supposed to be able — in a context where one can live happily, and part of what an individual needs for that happiness is to have a partner — to have a fulfilling, romantic and sexual relationship,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “And the only options are women.”
Rucka also notes that they wouldn’t label themselves as any form of LGBT, because they don’t have the context of heterosexuality to compare themselves. He also says that it will only be explicit in the comics when it is necessary to the story, so I guess it’s time to get Diana a girlfriend.
There is an upcoming biopic on her creation
Professor Marston & The Wonder Women is set to tell the story of Marston’s life and the creation of Wonder Woman — as well as his relationship with Elizabeth and Byrne.
Luke Evans is will play the lead alongside Rebecca Hall and Bella Heathcote. There is no release date as yet.
Wonder Woman (2017) was in development from 1996
Wonder Woman went through many hands before landing on director Patty Jenkins and finally being released. It was initially set to be helmed by Ivan Reitman, then by Jon Cohen (to star Sandra Bullock). In 2005, Joss Whedon was announced as writer and director. He left the project in 2007. It carried on through the studio until 2015, when Patty Jenkins agreed to take on the role of director.
Gal Gadot was then offered the lead role over Élodie Yung and Olga Kurylenko, and production began late 2015, a whole 19 years later. To put it into perspective: Gadot was 11 years old when development began.
Zack Snyder has a cameo in the 2017 flick
Producer Zack Snyder — who directed Batman vs Superman and Man of Steel — makes a cameo in Wonder Woman as a World War I soldier.
Snyder has previously had cameos as a soldier in Dawn of the Dead and Watchmen. In Batman v Superman, his hand made an appearance as Bruce Wayne’s.
Gal Gadot is pregnant in some of the shots
Gal Gadot fell pregnant after filming Wonder Woman, but was called back for some reshoots when she was showing.
Gadot says that a lot of the shots were done in close-up, but for those that weren’t she had to wear a green fabric over her stomach for CGI.
Wonder Woman broke the box office record for a film directed by a woman
Patty Jenkins broke the record for highest opening for a female-directed feature ever as Wonder Woman pulled in over US$100-million domestically and an extra US$125-million internationally. It pushed out Sam Taylor-Johnson’s Fifty Shades of Grey, which made US$85-million in its opening weekend.
It also managed to be the 16th largest-opening superhero film of all time — and attracted an audience made up of 52% woman. Usually superhero movie’s audiences are around 60% male.