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Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 11/11/2008

Beyonce's No 'Wonder Woman' (Yet)

By Liz Kelly

The author as Wonder Woman. (Illustration by Troy Witcher)

Guest blogger Tanya Ballard Brown considers Beyonce's latest whim.

I have read and watched Wonder Woman since I was a wee tot. I put aluminum foil on my wrists and head, attached my jumprope to a big belt from my mom's closet and donned a leotard and tights to create a Wonder Woman costume. I flew the invisible plane. I can recite the lyrics to the theme song of the 1980s-era television show (and I know that it changed later). Wonder Woman was my childhood idol.

So, over the weekend when I saw this piece about Beyonce's desire to play Wonder Woman, I felt a sharp pain in my eye. Likely caused by the pencil I jammed in it.

I'm sorry Beyonce, but you're not ready to fight for our rights in your satin tights.

I understand that DC Comics wants to hold on to the boost it got this summer from the latest Batman movie, "The Dark Knight." But what made that work was the talent and skill of actors like Heath Ledger, Christian Bale, Gary Oldman, Morgan Freeman and Aaron Eckhart. And I understand Hollywood execs eyeing the success of recent movies based on Marvel comics -- "Iron Man," "The Hulk" (he's only "incredible" on TV) and "Spider-Man" -- and wanting to extend that winning streak.

Beyonce, however, can spin herself into a tornado and it will not transform her into Wonder Woman. She is not yet enough of an actress to carry an entire movie that doesn't rely on her unquestionable singing talents.

I've pulled together a list of the people I think could wield the bulletproof bracelets. If I left anyone out, add your candidates to the comments section.

Tanya Ballard Brown, an alumna of washingtonpost.com, now stops bullets cold and lassos the truth for NPR.org.

By Liz Kelly  | November 11, 2008; 10:42 AM ET
Categories:  Celebrities, Insta-Polls  
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Comments

Not sure any of the above actresses is curvy enough to play Wonder Woman. Queen Latifah might be a better choice.

Posted by: changling | November 11, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

While I voted for Hilary Swank, I personally think that Keri Russell would make a great WW.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Doesn't Angelina Jolie already think she is Wonder Woman?

Nobody on that list is good enough to play the role. Not even Hilary Swank (she doesn't have the right kind of atmosphere for this role).
Come to think of it, I literally cannot think of anyone in the current crop of young actresses who has the sex appeal and acting chops to play the role.

Posted by: epjd | November 11, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Since changling beat me to my first pick, I'm going to have to go with Rosie O'Donnell. Just rent 'Exit to Eden' to check out how good she looks in a bustier.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 11, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Actually, I was all geeked up about a WW movie when Joss Whedon was gonna write it and possibly use Morena Baccarin in the title role. http://www.imdb.com/media/rm734042368/nm1072555


Or some other really excellent actress, 'cause he knows how to write - and cast - strong women.

Now - meh.

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | November 11, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Ok, I'll say it, Beyonce is an AWFUL actress. I had hoped that producers would see that and stop putting her in movies.

Hello? Halle Berry could rock that bustier.

Posted by: jakeepoo | November 11, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Kerry Washington has my vote. I think she could pull it off.

If not Kerry, might I suggest, some woman, any woman from off the street but not Beyonce. I'm cringing already at the thought of her playing Etta. Don't get me wrong I like B but she can't act.

Posted by: petalceleb | November 11, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Ooh speaking of Joss Whedon, Eliza Dushku would make a great Wonder Woman!

Posted by: sjcpeach | November 11, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I think the litmus test for any actress playing Wonder Woman is as follows:

Can you imagine her punching out Christian Bale's Batman? Not slapping him, not going all kung-fu; punching him out like a prizefighter and not caring if she breaks her nails in the process.

I can't think of anybody. Angeline Jolie might be the closest, but only if she presses some serious metal and signs a no-pouting clause for the duration of the film.

Posted by: Bawlmer | November 11, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I voted for the guest blogger. She's probably better than anyone on that list. I actually think Michelle Obama would be a good WW (my heavens she's tall!)
I realize she might not have the goods for the bustier, but they make magic happen in Hollywood.

Posted by: pras40 | November 11, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Going on Bawlmer's requirements for punching out Christian Bale...
Charlize Theron? She "landed" a great punch on Edward Norton (if I remember correctly?) in the Italian Job.

And I agree with Dorkus. Keri Russel was the first one to come to mind...I just couldn't remember her real name and didn't want to say "Felicity."

Posted by: eet7e | November 11, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

You need to include "other" or "none of the above" Not any good choices (barring your own, of course!)

Posted by: Stormy1 | November 11, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I've actually been following this subject for a while. I know Joss Whedon had considered Charisma Carpenter and Morena Baccarain at various points.

I still like Keri Russel, but after seeing The Aviator, I could see Kate Beckinsale in the role, or Megan Fox (if she put on some weight).

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

While I agree that Angelina looks like a cartoon character (a very hot cartoon character) I think that every actor should get one shot only at playing an animated person. I mean, can you imagine Lou Ferrigno going to to play Batman, Spiderman, etc? No. He's the Hulk. And Angelina is Lara Croft. Period.

I would like Eliza Dushku for WW... if she could act worth a darn. But she can't. Moving on.

I wonder if Scarlett Johannsen could pull it off.

Posted by: WDC2 | November 11, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I see ScarJo as Supergirl or Black Canary. But that is the blonde prejudice speaking.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 11, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

I see Wonder Woman as a tall (5'8" or taller) full figured woman. Not fat like Queen Latifah (who I think is great), and not skinny like Kerri Russel. (who I also think is great)
Based on my criteria I can't think of anyone except maybe Lucy Lawless. (Xena herself)
I am in to ( ) today I guess.

Posted by: Iowahoosier | November 11, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

How about Sandra Bullock for WW? Might be on the older side of things but still highly considerable to me.

Posted by: dbasile | November 11, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Sandra Bullock or Lucy Lawless! I think we're getting warmer.

Posted by: Bawlmer | November 11, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Just so you guys know, Sandra Bullock is tiny. Seen her in person on many occasions. But that's the beauty of Hollywood, they can make anyone buffer or taller than they actually are (see Cruise, Tom).

ScarJo, might be good, but the problem with the blond actresses is whether or not they would look good as brunettes, and ScarJo is kind of pale in that respect.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Tanya would be GREAT as Wonder Woman! LOL!

I'm thinking that since the original Wonder Woman is a Latina...would be great to think of some Latina actresses too.

Posted by: CreoleInDC | November 11, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Why are people concerned about the acting ability of any of these actresses? Does a comic book character really have to show great emotional depth?

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Laila Ali might make a good WW...

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Hows about Lucy Liu or Natalie Portman?
And I don't know if she can act, but Dita Von Teese sure would look nice in the costume!
Uma Thurman might be a good choice too and we already know she can do the dark hair and throw a punch.

Posted by: VaLGaL | November 11, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Why in the name of Houdini would Hillary Swank even appear in this list "lol". Wonder Woman was not a flat chested, unfeminine looking individual from what I can recall. If that's the case, why didn't you add Sandy Duncan or better yet, Jane Fonda. Even they can better represent.

Posted by: aabreu7 | November 11, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Does a comic book character really have to show great emotional depth?

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 1:08 PM

*******************************************

Spartan, compare Michael Keaton as Batman to Christian Bale as Batman, and then tell me if one's acting ability is important or not.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

"Spartan, compare Michael Keaton as Batman to Christian Bale as Batman, and then tell me if one's acting ability is important or not."-DorkusMaximus1

Point taken.

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

So if we're looking for a$$ kickers who can act, I've got nothing.

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Why is Keira Knightley on this list? She's lovely, yes, but she'd be blown away in a strong breeze.

How about Michelle Rodriguez? Yes, she's short, but she's got a nice body and proven ability to kick butt.

I second the Laila Ali nom, and would vote Aye for Lucy Lawless.

Posted by: northgs | November 11, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

WW had a pretty face too. How about Eva Mendes?
Pretty face-check.
Great body-check.
Could kick someone's arse-check.

Posted by: pras40 | November 11, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Someone curvy, for sure. No skinny-minnies. Halle Berry or Dita von Teese would look the best!

Posted by: Californian11 | November 11, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Hadn't thought of Lucy Lawless. I think she'd be great!

Posted by: VaLGaL | November 11, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Salma Hayek, lactation optional.

Posted by: MStreet1 | November 11, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I vote for a current unknown to take the role. If you have to have a name, I'd say Evangeline Lilly. Of course, she's have to beef up a bit. Morena Baccarin would be pretty good, too.

Oh, and FYI, The Hulk was Incredible in the 2008 movie version. It was the 2003 Ang Lee version that was simply Hulk, no article or adjective.

Posted by: fft5305 | November 11, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

A semi-slimmed down Sara Ramirez?

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

While Salma Hayek is one hot Latina (lactation or no), she is petite. Wonder Woman needs to be at least average height, if not taller.

Based on her stint as Xenia, Lucy Lawless would carry the magical bracelets quite well. Halle Berry's stint as Storm (We'll conveniently forget her role as Catwoman) qualifies her. Finally, I'm surprised that no one has mentioned Jennifer Garner. Her time as Sydney Bristow in Alias and her glamor heroine role in Elektra make her well-qualified. Michelle Forbes might also be worth a wonder Woman tryout.

Note that I'm giving priority to experience in similar roles over "other" attributes.

Should we have another "Who played the best Batman?" argument? My vote: Christian Bale, no question. Ms Snatchquatch favors Val Kilmer, but only because she has a thing for pretty boys with cupid bow,lips. Yeah, I know: Why TF is she with me? Good question.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | November 11, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I would love to see Catherine Zeta Jones play WW.

I agree with with most of these comments. Beyonce is not a strong enough actress to play the role (or any role for that matter) and does acing it all for the wrong reasons. The other women on the list are not right for the role either.

Posted by: tiffanydturner | November 11, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Sas, is there even a debate to be had at this point about the best Batman? Yes, I too loved the BatKilmer in my formative years, but c'mon. Christian Bale. Such quality. And in such stellar films.

I, too, like Catherine Zeta-Jones. And I could definitely see Jennifer Garner in the role; I think she'd really embrace the fun and physicality of WW.

Posted by: Bawlmer | November 11, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

YESSSS, tiffany, CZT would make a lovely choice!

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Rachel Weisz
Sara Ramirez (she rocked as Lady of the Lake in Spamalot)
Gabrielle Union
Rebecca Romijn
Q'orianka Kilcher (Pocahontas in the New World)

I think Sara Ramirez would be my pick.


Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Catherine Zeta-Jones, Lucy Lawless or Sara Ramirez would all be good. They can act. They can kick butt. And they can do the slight, but not over the top, camp needed to really carry off this role.

Posted by: epjd | November 11, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to say it but I think Catherine Zeta Jones may be a bit too old.

Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I didn't know who Sarah Ramirez was, so I looked her up and based on this photo alone, she gets my vote. Vavoom!
http://i134.photobucket.com/albums/q92/VietAngel80/SaraRamirez2.jpg

Posted by: VaLGaL | November 11, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Roxie1, I beg to differ. Catherine Zeta Jones is not quite 40 (some may argue that's too old, but we're talking Wonder WOMAN not Wonder Girl) and only looks older when she's around Michael Douglas.

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I think Nosy has a great candidate in Sara Ramirez. She is not only large in build, but she also is XXL in stage presence. Her persona takes over the entirety of any space she occupies. And her singing voice: WOW! When Ms Snatchquatch and I saw Spamalot a couple of years ago, I was smitten with Sara Ramirez.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | November 11, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Valgal, all I got to say is yow-zah!

Wonder Woman is only in her late 20's in the comics (there's a sliding time scale) so I think the actresses should be around that age as well.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm....I thought she was older than that. You're right. It's because she's hanging out with Michael Douglas.

Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

if you're looking for Latina and curvy for the WW costume, how about JLo? if she wants to don the bracelets, I say give her a shot at it.

another Jennifer that could do it: Connelly. I think she could pull it off, just not sure if she'd want to do a role like that. seems like she leans towards more serious acting jobs.

Posted by: flutterbyjen | November 11, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Ack, CZJ.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

I'd laugh out loud at JLo as WW.

Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

I have to change my vote and go with Nosy's suggestion. Sara Ramirez would be perfect.

Posted by: petalceleb | November 11, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Sas, I think Sara Ramirez' talents are frittered away on "Grey's Anatomy." She deserves so much better (although I suppose it's an easy way for an actor to snag a lucrative steady paycheck).

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Catherine Zeta-Jones just turned 39, and at least when she filmed "Chicago" was still quite fit. For anyone who's 39 and change, the idea of CZJ being too old is Just. Plain. Depressing.

Nosy P crawls off into a corner to snuffle softly.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Nosy - I'm sorry to depress you. I'd watch CZJ in just about anything. I just didn't see her in this role. Maybe it was more that it was too silly for her?

In any case - we agree on Sara Ramirez. I thought of her too but then had to go figure out her name on IMDB and then realized we were both thinking of the same person. Go Lady of the Lake!

Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Roxie, it's a win-win. Casting Sara as WW could also rescue her from "Grey's"!

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | November 11, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Gina Torres!!

Posted by: EmeraldEAD | November 11, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

If they need to find someone else who would like a job on Grey's I'd be happy to step in to fill the void.

Posted by: Roxie1 | November 11, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I think Rebecca Romijn is an excellent choice. Wonderwoman is an Amazon and RR is a big girl.

Posted by: tippyzzz | November 11, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

A possible plot for a WW film can be found at the Slow Wave comic site:

http://www.slowwave.com/index.php?date=08-10-18

Posted by: byoolin1 | November 11, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

I second the Jennifer Garner nomination. I'm surprised another former TV ass-kicker hasn't been mentioned -- namely Jessica Alba. She generally blonde, but not so pale that she couldn't carry the brunette look off.

Posted by: WasatchTom | November 11, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Late to the party, but I think Dorkus' idea of Kate Beckinsale is a great one.

Teri Hatcher? Too thin?

Robin Wright Penn? WW has to be a brunette, but RWP could rock it.

Winona Ryder would be fun to watch, but her voice is all wrong.

Toni Colette? Ellen Page? Marisa Tomei?

Though I can't think of candidates without seeing Deirdre Hall as Electra Woman or whatshername as Isis so many Saturday mornings ago. . . .

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | November 11, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

How about Famke Janssen? Check her out in that Bond movie ("Goldeneye"?) as Xenia Onatopp and we may have a winner.

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | November 11, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

I could see Famke in WW.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Ellen Page is an interesting idea. Anyone who's seen Hard Candy knows she could bring the attitude, but as was noted about Sandra Bullock and some of the others who have been suggested, is she tall enough to portray the Amazon warrior princess? Also, is she likely to jump from quirky and challenging indie roles to major studio super hero eye candy?

Posted by: WasatchTom | November 11, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

You know who we forgot? Demi Moore. Sure she's only 5'5", but remember her in Charlie's Angels, she has the body and can kick butt.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Famke? Are we no longer requiring acting ability?

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Dorkus, you're confusing me with your Demi Moore reco. I thought you were the one who said that the new WW should be in her late 20's (as was the comic book character).

Posted by: spartan123 | November 11, 2008 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Well, Demi's new body is young enough for the role.

Posted by: DorkusMaximus1 | November 11, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Hey, don't diss Famke! She speaks four languages (imagine her using all four in this role, could be fun to watch), plus she's 5'11".

Posted by: td_in_baltimore | November 11, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Hey, No one said Megan Fox. Now I think she would be great. The reason everyones having a hard time picturing any of these actresses playing wonder woman is that these faces have been around so long. Time to get some new faces in hollywood. Angelina would be a choice if she wasn't so hard. There's some woman out there that this role was made for.

Posted by: p_styles | November 11, 2008 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Megan Fox, Jennifer Garner, or CZJ. CZJ def. has the skills, c'mon, she was married to Zorro for two films, she's had to of picked SOMETHING up!!!

Posted by: Bren21157 | November 11, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey Tanya well stated. Every1 wants an unknown actress for Wonder Woman, we need to look upcoming actress Sophia M. Martinez. I read Sophia has auditioned for JLA in Sept. 07 not sure what happened. Here is Sophia M. Martinez sites. I'd love 2 see Sophia play Wonder Woman. She has all the talent & looks. www.nowcasting.com/sophiamartinez
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2124314/
www.myspace.com/sOsOmega

Posted by: WW08 | November 11, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

here SOPHIA MARTINEZ acting reel on Youtube -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuxhR66CfZI

Posted by: WW08 | November 11, 2008 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Beyonce is no Wonder Woman "yet"? Beyonce is no Wonder Woman PERIOD!!! She can't act, and, quite frankly, like a lot of 'celebrities', she's a living caricature: dumb, materialistic (despite professing endlessly to be a good Christian), narcissistic, I could go on and on.

What the role needs is a smart talented UNKNOWN!!! If the Hollywood big-wigs stick to the material in and basics of the comic book, find a visionary director and cast a smart talented UNKNOWN in the lead then this film can be a BIG success. Fantasy and Greek Mythology are quite popular and since Wonder Woman is heavily rooted in that (something Beyonce obviously doesn't understand, among so many things...) the seeds are all definitely there to plant and flower a major hit.

Read Wonder Woman's origin story in the excellent graphic novel, 'Gods and Mortals'. I strongly urge you all to do so and you'll be craving a movie based on it. You can order a copy here or visit your local comic book store and see if they have copies
http://www.amazon.com/Wonder-Woman-Vol-Gods-Mortals/dp/1401201970/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226455840&sr=1-2
Trust me -- you'll love it!

Posted by: deirdremacg | November 11, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

My vote is Jennifer Connelly (hope I got the spelling correct). She has the looks and she can act. Probably have to bulk up the hips a little bit and use a padded bra, but she could handle the role.

Posted by: sboyd18 | November 11, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

i'd like to add america farrera..i'm not sure how tall she is but she's got the curves, is a brown haired latina, and i think she would make an awesome WW!

Posted by: busybia | November 12, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Yes. thank you Iowa... I agree with you the role should definately be handed to Lucy Lawless Xenia herself- on a silver friggin plater. This chick has more Wonder Woman quality in her pinky finger than the 5 women in the poll have all together. She's not 20 something but she'd still kill it. Second choice is Sara Ramirez- I could totally see her as WW. Love Halle the dramatic actress, hated her as Catwoman, and tolerated her as Storm. Tired of seeing Jolie, sorry. And Beyonce: girl go lay down. *SMH*
WTF? I can't believe she said that out loud. What's next "William Hung: The Tom Jones Story"? lwaaayyyyol.

Posted by: tyralpoole | November 12, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

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