If you’re not living under a rock you would know, Wonder Woman actor Gal Gadot’s casting as Cleopatra got backlash while Twitter got a much-deserved history lesson.
Cleopatra has been one of the most sought after movie subjects in the history of Hollywood. A character that has romanced both Caesar and Antony, and was the last Ptolemaic ruler of Egypt. Cleopatra has earlier been played on screen by the likes of Claudette Colbert and Elizabeth Taylor. As reported by IGN.com, the team of Wonder Woman 1984 – Gal Gadot and Patty Jenkins is re-teaming for Cleopatra movie to be produced by Paramount films.
Actor Gadot an Israeli with Ashkenazi Jewish heritage faced a backlash from Twitter which demanded an Arab actor to play the part. While Twitter’s intent stands valid in the age of inclusion and diversity, its knowledge fell short.
Queen of Egypt Cleopatra was Greek with Persian and Syrian ancestry.
That coupled with the fact that Gal Gadot brought Wonder Woman, an Amazonian princess, from the Greek mythology to life successfully should end the casting debate. However, we have found another piece of evidence in the comic book mythology that legitimizes Gal Gadot’s claim to portray Cleopatra on the big screen!
Wonder Woman Vol. 1 #161
In the comic book titled Wonder Woman and the Curse of Cleopatra, published February 1966, showed Diana Prince having an acting stint as Cleopatra.
Okay, so the story goes like this. Villain, Countess Draska Nishki visits Diana Prince and offers her service as a spy. Diana refuses her proposal and gets tossed around the room by “the cleverest and most beautiful spy ever known in Europe or America.”
Meanwhile, Diana and Steve are witnessing a competition between two rival movie studios to shell out a Cleopatra epic. Magnum Magnus of Magnus Pictures approaches Diana and Steve to essay the roles of Cleopatra and Antony in their movie. As the actors originally set to play these roles have mysteriously fallen into catatonia. A mummy-wrapped claims that the sleep spell has fallen on these actors due to a curse on the Egyptian Queen.
Further, in order to play the role of Cleopatra, Wonder Woman had to let go of her lasso of truth. During the filming, the mummy-wrapped actress turns out to be Draska Nishki. She steals the lasso of truth, encircles it around Diana’s neck. She then compels Diana to destroy her own movie set. You would think, why would Draska do so? The rival movie studio hired Draska Nishki to sabotage this project.
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Finally, the Amazonian princess came to her senses. Draska had to let go of Diana because a huge statue on the set was about to fall endangering the spy’s life. That was it. Diana comes back to her senses, takes care of the big statue, gets her lasso back, and makes sure that Draska Nishki regrets her decision.
Gal Gadot as Cleopatra
It seems to be an interesting coincidence that the actress portraying Wonder Woman will also play Cleopatra. There are a lot of similarities in the way two rival studios are bidding to make a Cleopatra project and how Paramount defeated the likes of Netflix and Apple to back this project. Maybe, somewhere down the line, this idea clicks in the minds of Patty Jenkins, who is helming both Cleopatra and Wonder Woman, and the officials at WB. We would love to see Gal Gadot as Cleopatra and Amazon Princess on-screen.
If that’s not the sign enough that Gal Gadot is perfect to play Cleopatra. We don’t know what is!