With James Gunn’s rebooted DC Universe drawing nearer, one DC Comics run is perfect for Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman. James Gunn, the co-CEO of DC Studios, announced part of the DC Universe’s forthcoming slate of properties, titled “Chapter One: Gods and Monsters.” The new DC Universe will only be a partial reboot of the original DCEU, and while key characters like Superman and Batman will be recast, other equally important characters, such as Wonder Woman and Aquaman, may retain their original DCEU actors. Gal Gadot’s status as Wonder Woman in the new DC Universe is unclear for now, but she can and should continue to play the iconic role in the rebooted universe.
Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman 3 was canceled in December 2022, but Jenkins’ involvement in the franchise is not necessarily over. James Gunn has since clarified that Gal Gadot has not been fired and remains enthusiastic to continue having her play Wonder Woman. Moreover, Gadot has met with Gunn to discuss her future in the DC Universe. While Henry Cavill and Dwayne Johnson announced their departure or absence from DC, respectively, Gadot made no such announcement following her meeting with Gunn. Even in a soft-rebooted DCU, Gal Gadot should continue to play Wonder Woman, and Greg Rucka’s Wonder Woman: Rebirth comic run is the perfect source material for Gadot’s next Wonder Woman solo movie.
James Gunn Mut Keep Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman
Gal Gadot’s portrayal of Wonder Woman in the old DCEU breathed new life into one of DC’s most iconic superheroes. While many of the DCEU’s installments were met with mixed receptions, 2017’s Wonder Woman remains the franchise’s high point, and Gal Gadot is the definitive Wonder Woman actress for many, be they casual filmgoers or hardcore DC Comics fans. With the DCU only partially rebooting the old DCEU, Gal Gadot should remain in the role, considering her cultural impact, positive reception, and eagerness to continue playing Wonder Woman. Wonder Woman would be the only member of DC’s “big three” superheroes to not be recast, but this would not be an issue.
The new DC Universe will retain elements of the DCEU, with Viola Davis reprising her role as Amanda Waller in the upcoming TV series Waller and the cast of Peacemaker returning in the show’s second season. Viola Davis’s Amanda Waller and John Cena’s Peacemaker have both interacted with DCEU characters who are due to be recast, with the former having scenes with Ben Affleck’s Batman and the latter chastising the Henry Cavill version of Superman. If new iterations of Batman and Superman can share a universe with old DCEU characters, there is no need to recast Wonder Woman, especially with the new DC Universe likely rewriting the histories of returning DCEU characters to some degree.
Greg Rucka’s Wonder Woman Run Is Itself A Soft Reboot
In his announcement of the DC Universe’s upcoming projects, James Gunn singled out specific DC Comics runs as inspirations for forthcoming movies and TV shows. Grant Morrison’s run of Batman comics will be the basis of the upcoming Batman film, The Brave and the Bold. Similarly, Tom King’s eight-issue miniseries, Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow, will be the source material for the DCU’s Supergirl movie of the same name. With this in mind, Wonder Woman’s inevitable DC Universe solo outing has the perfect inspiration in Greg Rucka’s four-arc run on Wonder Woman: Rebirth, which serves as a blueprint for both a modern-day Wonder Woman story and a soft reboot for the franchise.
The DC Comics universe itself underwent a soft reboot in 2016 via the DC Rebirth relaunch, which melded elements of previous eras with the post-Flashpoint DC Universe. Wonder Woman benefited from this relaunch, as her post-Rebirth incarnation combines the best traits and lore of all her comic eras. Greg Rucka’s critically-acclaimed run appeals to longtime Wonder Woman readers while serving as an introduction to newcomers. In an in-universe and meta sense, Wonder Woman deals with the repercussions of a soft reboot, making the run perfect for a Gal Gadot Wonder Woman film in the DCU, as it preserves her and part of her DCEU story while making changes as needed.
In Rucka’s Wonder Woman run, Diana’s memories of her New 52 origin and solo adventures are revealed to be fabricated by Ares’ sons, Phobos and Deimos, as well as Doctor Manhattan. Diana Prince undergoes a mental breakdown and identity crisis for a time before remembering her true origins and becoming Wonder Woman once again. In the DCU’s case, Wonder Woman would have memories of her DCEU experiences, only now her “true” origin would be in the modern era, with Etta Candy and a living Steve Trevor as her supporting characters. This would make Wonder Woman’s older films partially canon while giving her a clean slate for future adventures
James Gunn Would Set Up The Perfect Future For Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman
James Gunn has made it clear that the DC Universe is not a hard reboot of the DCEU, even with characters like Superman and Batman getting a fresh start. Gal Gadot’s portrayal of Wonder Woman, Patty Jenkins’ direction, and Chris Pine’s performances as Steve Trevor are all elements worth preserving in the new DC Universe and a Wonder Woman film based on Greg Rucka’s comic run allows this. Gal Gadot can return as Wonder Woman in the modern day along with Chris Pine’s Steve Trevor in new films directed by Patty Jenkins. New versions of Cheetah and Ares would be introduced, but likely still be played by Kristen Wiig and David Thewlis.
A Rucka-inspired, Gal Gadot-led Wonder Woman film is free from the baggage of the DCEU while not needing to spend too much time on Diana’s origins. This allows the Wonder Woman franchise to keep its beloved supporting characters and villains while moving forward and introducing new ones. Familiar Wonder Woman characters like Hippolyta and Antiope would return, a Rucka-inspired Wonder Woman movie would also introduce Ferdinand (the self-described “Kithotaur”) as a supporting character, Phobos and Deimos as antagonists, and Veronica Cale as a future villain. Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor’s chemistry was one of the older films’ high points, but it would now continue without Trevor needing to be resurrected again.
Wonder Woman was, notably, missing from James Gunn’s DC Universe Chapter One announcement, as the upcoming Paradise Lost takes place before Diana’s birth and will likely not feature Wonder Woman in a significant capacity. Considering how important Wonder Woman is to the DC mythos, she will need to make her DCU introduction sooner rather than later, and Gal Gadot is irreplaceable in the role. Greg Rucka’s Wonder Woman Rebirth run is the perfect basis for Diana’s first DCU movie, as it allows the DC Universe to keep Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman and elements of her previous films while setting up a bright future for her in James Gunn’s rebooted DC Universe.