Anonymous Ex-Warner Bros. Employee Claims Wonder Woman Is "Another Mess"

Friday, 12 August 2016 - 3:01PM
DC Comics
Wonder Woman
Friday, 12 August 2016 - 3:01PM
Anonymous Ex-Warner Bros. Employee Claims Wonder Woman Is "Another Mess"
< >
I will be so, so sad if this is true. After the disappointing critical reception for Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad, the exciting Wonder Woman trailer seemed like the great shining hope for the future of the DCEU (aside from a possible Harley Quinn spin-off). But if a recent open letter is to be believed, Wonder Woman's trailer was deceptively great, but the movie is "another mess."



The open letter, which was posted on Pajiba, was written by a woman who goes by the name Gracie Law (a character from Big Trouble in Little China), and takes Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara to task for laying off 10% of the workforce in order to pay expensive directors more money for movies that ultimately fail on storytelling. She cites a memo from Tsujihara explaining the layoffs, and he allegedly said that the studio wanted to invest more in their "extraordinary storytellers" and "provide the creative environment and financial resources they need to realize their vision."

She started crafting this letter a year ago, but Suicide Squad looked so great, she decided to hold off and see if they could turn things around. But now that Suicide Squad is a critical failure (and kind of a terrible movie), she is ready to give her diagnosis:

Opening quote
"Here we are. I got back from my screening and dusted this sucker off. You, your executive team, and the vision of your 'extraordinary storytellers' that resulted in the loss of around one thousand jobs seem intent on crashing the ship into as much shit as you can find in the ocean by making inane decisions over and over again."
Closing quote

She claims that the studio is stubbornly refusing to learn from their mistakes. Instead of punishing the top-level people who are failing to deliver, they're laying off more low-level people in order to keep people like Zack Snyder around. 

Opening quote
"Zack Snyder is not delivering. Is he being punished? Assistants who were doing fantastic work certainly were. People in finance and in marketing and in IT. They had no say in a movie called Batman V Superman only having 8 minutes of Batman fighting Superman in it, that ends because their moms have the same name. 

Snyder is a producer on every DC movie. He is still directing Justice League. He is being rewarded with more opportunity to get more people laid off."
Closing quote

And then, most worrisome of all, she claims that there is already evidence that Warner Bros. is failing to course-correct. According to insiders, she says, Wonder Woman is suffering from production problems just like Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad before it:

Opening quote
"I wish to God you were forced to live out of a car until you made a #1 movie of the year. Maybe Wonder Woman wouldn't be such a mess. Don't try to hide behind the great trailer. People inside are already confirming it's another mess. It is almost impressive how you keep rewarding the same producers and executives for making the same mistakes, over and over."
Closing quote

Granted, we need to take this letter with a grain of salt, for several different reasons. First, the writer is anonymous, so there's no way to verify that she's actually an ex-WB employee. It would be a little strange if someone decided to slam DC by getting into the nitty gritty of corporate layoffs, rather than just slamming the future movie slate even more directly, but there's no way to know for sure. Second, if she is an ex-WB employee, she may have a personal axe to grind against the company (although, if all of this is true, who could blame her). And finally, Wonder Woman is still almost a year away, so there's plenty of editing and post-production left to be done before it comes out.

But still, everything she's saying sounds consistent with what we know about the DCEU thus far. Warner Bros. has made some effort to course-correct, especially by doubling down on Batfleck and making Geoff Johns the chief creative voice behind the DCEU rather than Zack Snyder, but mostly the studio doesn't seem to be learning from its mistakes. Snyder is still directing Justice League, they're still talking about Man of Steel 2, and after the incomprehensible editing job on Batman v Superman, they still edited Suicide Squad beyond all recognition. And although Wonder Woman is still pretty far away, principal photography ended in May, so if there were production troubles, they would probably start coming out right about now. Patti Jenkins is a great director, so hopefully her voice will shine through in Wonder Woman, but now we're more than a little worried.

Suicide Squad is now out in theaters. Wonder Woman comes out on June 2, 2017, and Justice League hits theaters on November 17, 2017.
Science Fiction
Comic Book Movies
DC Comics
Wonder Woman