Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins says James Cameron’s controversial remarks about her blockbuster summer release are “unsurprising as, though he is a great filmmaker, he is not a woman.”

“James Cameron’s inability to understand what Wonder Woman is, or stands for, to women all over the world is unsurprising as, though he is a great filmmaker, he is not a woman,” Jenkins wrote in a note she posted to Twitter. “Strong women are great. His praise of my film Monster, and our portrayal of a strong yet damaged woman was so appreciated. But if women have to always be hard, tough and troubled to be strong, and we aren’t free to be multidimensional or celebrate an icon of women everywhere because she is attractive and loving, then we haven’t come very far have we. I believe women can and should be EVERYTHING just like male lead characters should be. There is no right and wrong kind of powerful woman. And the massive female audience who made the film a hit it is, can surely choose to judge their own icons of progress.”

Jenkins response comes after Cameron said during an interview with The Guardian that he found “all of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman” to be “misguided.”

“She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!” Cameron said of Wonder Woman, played in the film by Gal Gadot. “I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards.”

Cameron, who is doing promotional interviews for Terminator 2: Judgment Day, cited that franchise’s lead character, Sarah Connor, as an antithesis to Wonder Woman.

“Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon,” Cameron said. “She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefit of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”

Cameron’s remarks were slammed on Twitter Thursday.

Wonder Woman
  • Movie
  • 141 minutes
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