James Cameron Defends 'Wonder Woman' Critique: It Wasn't "Anything Groundbreaking"

"They had Raquel Welch doing stuff like that in the '60s," the 'Avatar' director says of the Gal Gadot hit.

James Cameron isn't backing down from his comments about Warner Bros. and DC's Wonder Woman.

Last month, Cameron caused an online uproar after calling the Gal Gadot superhero movie "a step backwards," telling an interviewer, "All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman has been so misguided. … She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing!"

As part of this week's Hollywood Reporter cover story, Cameron explained this comments further.

"Yes, I'll stand by that," Cameron told THR's Kim Masters. "I mean, she was Miss Israel, and she was wearing a kind of bustier costume that was very form-fitting. She’s absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. To me, that’s not breaking ground. They had Raquel Welch doing stuff like that in the ’60s."

Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins responded to Cameron's original comments by saying, "If women have to always be hard, tough and troubled to be strong, and we aren't free to be multidimensional or celebrate an icon of women everywhere because she is attractive and loving, then we haven't come very far have we[?]"

Cameron said that what his Terminator 2 lead Linda Hamilton created in the 1991 film was "if not ahead of its time, at least a breakthrough in its time."

"Linda looked great," he said. "She just wasn’t treated as a sex object. There was nothing sexual about her character. It was about angst, it was about will, it was about determination. She was crazy, she was complicated. … She wasn’t there to be liked or ogled, but she was central, and the audience loved her by the end of the film. As much as I applaud Patty directing the film and Hollywood, uh, 'letting' a woman direct a major action franchise, I didn’t think there was anything groundbreaking in Wonder Woman. I thought it was a good film. Period."

Cameron was willing to concede one thing, however. "Look, it was probably a little bit of a simplistic remark on my part, and I’m not walking it back, but I will add a little detail to it," he said. "I like the fact that, sexually, she had the upper hand with the male character, which I thought was fun."