The Significance of Wonder Woman’s Success

Both DC and Marvel have been pumping out comic book inspired superhero movies for the past several years. Some have been major success, like DC’s ‘The Dark Knight’, and others have missed the mark, like DC’s ‘Suicide Squad’. Despite the success of ‘The Dark Knight’ Marvel movies have seen much greater success than those of the DC Universe. Wonder Woman, of course, belongs to the DC world, which already places a lot of pressure on the new movie since both ‘Batman v Superman’ and ‘Suicide Squad’ did rather poorly for the company.
While there have been numerous female superheros featured on the big screen, Gal Gadot’s portrayal of ‘Wonder Woman’ marks the first superhero feature film starring a woman. DC and Gadot could benefit greatly from the success of Wonder Woman, and according to our pre-release chatter, ‘Wonder Woman’ is lining up to be DC’s biggest hit since ‘The Dark Knight’.
Wonder Woman Demonstrates Broader Appeal
The pre-movie chatter surrounding ‘Wonder Woman’ shows people who usually abstain from superhero movie conversations are actually participating in online conversations. Most superhero movies resonate strongly with a younger audience, ages 13-34 being a key demographic for the latest ‘Batman v Superman’ movie. While it is expected that a younger audience will flock to the theaters to see the latest action filled movie based on their favorite comics, engaging an older audience tends to be harder for these big blockbuster movies. ‘Wonder Woman’, on the other hand, is striking success with ages 25-44, enticing the allusive 35-44 demographic.

Another important fact about the ‘Wonder Woman’ audience is that the gender distribution is nearly split 50-50 among men and women. Although an outdated belief, there is still a looming fear that a female-led superhero movie might not peak the interests of male and female viewers alike. However, the gender composition for Wonder Woman’s audience seems on par with ‘Batman v Superman’ and might even drive a higher engagement among women as opening weekend comes to a close.
Wonder Woman Demonstrating Strong Volume and Sentiment
We compared conversation volume leading up to the release of four different superhero movies, ‘Batman v Superman’, ‘Suicide Squad’, ‘Doctor Strange’, and ‘Deadpool’, and found that none of those movies generated as much positive conversation as Wonder Woman.

As we mentioned, DC movies struggle to connect with audiences, so it’s no surprise that both ‘Batman v Superman’ and ‘Suicide Squad’ had low positivity ratings before their premieres both driving less than 30% positive conversations. There is a staggering 121% sentiment difference between how people discussed ‘Batman v Superman’ versus how they are talking about ‘Wonder Woman’. With 81% of all conversations being positive, ‘Wonder Woman’ is setting the precedent for all other superhero movies. Even the much anticipated and fairly successful Doctor Strange was 28% less positive than Wonder Woman.
Conversation and Sentiment Drivers for Wonder Woman?
There are various reasons as to why ‘Wonder Woman’ is this summer’s biggest anticipated movie release. Many are excited to see the dynamic female duo of Patty Jenkins’ directing and Gal Gadot’s acting. Despite the high expectations, people are loving Jenkins’ product so far, as critics have been raving about Wonder Woman and Jenkins’ vision. Things are clearly going well for the director, as conversations surrounding her are 91% positive.
Gal Gadot, an Israeli born actress, is fairly unknown to most Americans, as her biggest role to date has been in the Fast and Furious sequels. Gadot’s relatively unknownness is working out extremely well for her since she is being talked about positively 80% of the time. She has been making the late night circuit and charmed her way to a victory on Jimmy Fallon’s “Box of Lies.” Perhaps because many people aren’t familiar with her work it is easier for them to see and believe her portrayal as ‘Wonder Woman’. Unlike Gadot, Chris Pine, Gal’s love interest in the movie, is a fairly well known and well liked actor. His presence in the movie only benefits the overall positive surrounding it with Chris Pine being discussed positively 80% of the time as well.


Hopefully with the success of ‘Wonder Woman’ on the big screen, both DC and Marvel will amp up their efforts to producing more female-led superhero films. We are already seeing positive chatter surrounding Amber Heard for the upcoming film ‘Aquaman’. Regardless of what the future holds, the mix of Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot is setting ‘Wonder Woman’ up to be DC’s biggest box office success since 2008.
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