Patty Jenkins has officially closed a deal to direct Wonder Woman 2, and it looks like she will make significantly more money off of the sequel.
Variety was the first to report that Jenkins had reached a deal to direct the superhero sequel. They did not specify what Jenkins’ new contract looks like, but The Hollywood Reporter subsequently reported that she will be making between $7 million and $9 million to write and direct. This is in addition to a lucrative backend deal, which means she gets paid above her set salary depending on how the film performs.
That’s significantly more money than Jenkins made off of the first Wonder Woman, as she was reportedly paid $1 million to direct that movie. Jenkins had expressed interest in returning for the second installment, but no deal had officially been reached until today, and according to The Hollywood Reporter, that’s because she was looking to be paid something closer to what Zack Snyder has made for directing Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Justice League.
Jenkins’ Wonder Woman 2 salary is quite significant, as the typical director of a major studio film makes between $750,000 and $1.5 million, according to The Hollywood Reporter. For comparison, J.J. Abrams was reportedly paid about $4.3 million to direct Star Wars: The Force Awakens. On the other hand, Christopher Nolan reportedly made $20 million for directing Dunkirk, according to Vanity Fair. But it’s relatively rare for a director to make that much money off of one movie.
It’s not surprising that Warner Bros. would pay whatever it takes to get Patty Jenkins back for Wonder Woman 2. After the D.C. Extended Universe came out with multiple films in a row that failed to impress critics and fans, Wonder Woman was released in June to rapturous reviews. It became the highest grossing movie of the summer, taking in over $400 million domestically and over $800 million worldwide. This makes it the most successful superhero origin story of all time, and the fifth most successful superhero movie ever made behind only The Avengers, The Dark Knight, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and The Dark Knight Rises.
Even director Patty Jenkins says that she was somewhat surprised that the film was such a massive hit.
“I went into the release of the movie assuming it would be, in best case, a mixed bag,” Jenkins said in an interview. “And I sort of braced myself for it, where I thought, well, ‘Listen, you’re doing a beloved superhero; it’s always going to end up being at least 40%, oh you could have done, blah blah blah.’ So, the support and positivity that the movie has received, and also just the people wanting to talk about what we wanted to talk about in the movie and not other things, has been stunning.”