As the other member of DC’s holy trinity, Wonder Woman is a certifiable cultural icon, but one that remains impressively difficult to adapt for the screen, big or small. The CW has chosen to pass on the script for Amazon, a pilot for a potential television show starring the star-spangled heroine. The CW has had both past and recent success with adaptations of DC Comics characters, Smallville ran for ten seasons, and this fall’s Arrow has been both critically and commercially successful.
The CW has picked up eight pilots for development this year, but Amazon is not among them. The project is not dead and buried, however, and the show could be picked up at a later date after some tweaking of the script. The script was written by Allan Heinberg, but was not positively received by executives who felt that it needed more development. The project has not been shelved, and is still an option for being picked up if the changes to the script are positively received.
A recent pilot developed by David E. Kelley and starring Adrianne Palicki of Friday Night Lights fame was rejected by NBC in 2011. The character was previously the star of a popular television series starring Lynda Carter, which had a three season run of fifty-nine episodes that aired from 1976-1979. The character has also been a frequent presence in animated properties based on the DC universe, including a well-received solo-film and more recent appearances on Cartoon Network’s Young Justice.
Wonder Woman has been recently announced to be one of five focus characters of the upcoming Justice League film, along with Superman, Batman, the Flash, and the Green Lantern (which Flash or Green Lantern is not known). Whether or not her presence in the projected cinematic universe affected the decision to pass on the pilot is unknown, though it may be unlikely to have two live-action versions of the character ongoing simultaneously. A potential Bruce Wayne live-action series had been passed on to avoid confusion with the Christopher Nolan films several years ago. Joss Whedon, director of The Avengers, had previously been working to adapt the character to the big screen in a film set to star Cobie Smulders (Agent Maria Hill in The Avengers), but the project fell through.
The CW may have passed on developing the script for Amazon into a pilot, but there is still hope for the project and fans of the character. The successes of Smallville and Arrow on the network prove that there is a viable market for comic-book adaptations on television, and Wonder Woman has been the subject of a popular television show in the past. In addition, she’ll most likely be lassoing her way to the big-screen in 2015 in the Justice League film.