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12 Steps in Bringing Wonder Woman To The Big Screen

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News broke today that the next Superman movie won't just feature Batman; DC Comics superhero Wonder Woman will also be in the mix, making her first appearance ever in a movie. But it's been a long road to the big screen for the character. Here are the stages of production development involved in bringing Wonder Woman to a movie theater near you.

1. The Early Stages

In 2001, producer Joel Silver commissioned screenwriter Todd Alcott to pen a new script based on Wonder Woman, with Warner Bros and Silver Pictures on board to make the would-be film adaptation. Alcott had previously co-written the animated feature film Antz for DreamWorks and had penned the screenplay for the 13 Ghosts remake.

According to IGN, there were initial concerns when rumors arose that pop star Mariah Carey wanted to play the title character, but critics and fans alike felt better after Australian actress Lucy Lawless expressed an interest in playing the Amazonian warrior princess. Other Hollywood actresses linked to the Wonder Woman project were Sandra Bullock, Angelina Jolie, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and former-WWE wrestler Chyna.

2. Problems with the Script

In 2003, Todd Alcott’s first draft of the Wonder Woman screenplay saw revisions, re-writes, and polishes from screenwriters Jon Cohen, Becky Johnson, and Philip Levens. Ultimately, the script fell in the lap of screenwriter Laeta Kalogridis, who was an executive producer on the TV series Birds of Prey, based on the adventures of Batman and Catwoman’s daughter, the Huntress, another DC Comics superhero.

3. Enter Joss Whedon

In March 2005, Warner Bros and Silver Pictures announced that geek icon Joss Whedon would write and direct the film adaptation of Wonder Woman, which would’ve been Whedon’s next film project after his directorial debut, Serenity. The film would have featured Wonder Woman’s origin story and would’ve included Steve Trevor, Wonder Woman’s primary love interest.

4. ... And Exit Joss Whedon

But by 2007, Whedon had not produced a completed screenplay and left the project early in the year. Whedon cited differences with the movie studio surrounding early drafts of the script. While Joss Whedon never picked an actress to play Wonder Woman, Whedon-regulars Charisma Carpenter and Morena Baccarin expressed their interests in playing the superhero.

5. World War II-Era Wonder Woman

A few days before Whedon left the project, Silver acquired a spec script, which set Wonder Woman during World War II, from screenwriters Matthew Jennsion and Bret Strickland. While Silver was impressed with Jennsion and Strickland’s work, he had no intentions of turning their screenplay into a movie. Silver only purchased their spec script to take it off the market.

6. Paradise Island

In April 2008, Silver hired Matthew Jennsion and Bret Strickland to write a new Wonder Woman screenplay set in modern times. The new story ditched Wonder Woman's origin and explored her home Paradise Island, also known as Themyscira.

7. Joel Silver Lost Wonder Woman

In 2010, after 10 years of trying to bring Wonder Woman to the big screen, Silver lost the character’s film rights to DC Comics Entertainment. Warner Bros also announced that they would develop the comic book superhero for television and film.

8. TV Pilot For NBC

In 2010, Warner Bros Television partnered up with TV producer David E. Kelly to pitch Wonder Woman as the center of a new TV show. At first, NBC passed on the pitch, but eventually ordered a pilot episode in January 2011. The new TV series would re-invent the Wonder Woman character as Diana Prince, a corporate executive in Los Angeles by day, but a vigilante crime fighter by night. Friday Night Lights actress Adrianne Palicki was cast as Wonder Woman, while Tracue Thoms played Diana’s personal assistant, Etta Candy, and Elizabeth Hurley played the series villain Veronica Cade.

In May 2011, NBC announced that it would not produce a Wonder Woman series.

9. A Dark and Gritty Version of Wonder Woman

In 2011, Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn expressed his interest in making a Wonder Woman movie with his Drive star Christina Hendricks in the lead role. While it’s not likely that Winding-Refn’s version of Wonder Woman would have ever gotten made, the Danish director and Mad Men star were quite candid about the would-be project during the Drive press tour in 2011.

10. A Wonder Woman Prequel TV Series

In 2012, The CW, Warner Bros Television, and DC Comics Entertainment announced that they were developing a script for a new TV series called Amazon, which would follow Wonder Woman’s origins. While Scottish actress Amy Manson was considered a frontrunner for the lead role of the Amazonian princess, script problems delayed the TV pilot’s production from 2013 to 2014.

In July 2013, The CW confirmed a new TV series based on another DC Comics superhero, The Flash, but ultimately put Amazon on hold until a good script emerged. The CW President Mark Pedowitz said, "with an iconic character like Wonder Woman, we have to get it right."

11. The Heat Is On For Wonder Woman

In 2013, director Paul Feig expressed an interest in making a Wonder Woman action-comedy for Warner Bros and DC Comics Entertainment. Nothing came of it, though.

12. Man Of Steel Sequel: Batman Vs. Superman

In 2013, DC Comics Entertainment President Diane Nelson and Warner Bros President Greg Silverman hinted that Wonder Woman could make a cameo appearance in the Man of Steel sequel. Later, in December, Israeli actress and former supermodel Gal Gadot was cast to play Wonder Woman in Man of Steel 2, alongside Henry Cavill as Superman and Ben Affleck as Batman.

Primary image courtesy of Flickr user Eva Fannon.

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11 Ridiculously Overdue Library Books (That Were Finally Returned)
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Last week, Massachusetts's Attleboro Public Library received a big surprise when one of its regular patrons returned a copy of T.S. Arthur's The Young Lady at Home ... more than 78 years after it had been checked out. 

The man, whose name was not revealed, was reportedly helping a friend clean out his basement when he came across the tome. He recognized the library's stamp, then noticed its original due date: November 21, 1938. “We were amazed,” said Amy Rhilinger, the library’s assistant director. “I’ve worked here for 15 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this before.”

Because the library charges $.10 per day for overdue books, the total bill for this dusty read would come to about $2800—but the library isn't planning to cash in. “We’re not the library police," Rhilinger said. "We’re not tracking everyone’s things. Everyone returns things a few [days] late, and it’s one thing we joke about here.”

Though it's rare, the decades-overdue book's return is not unprecedented. Here are 11 more tardy returns.

1. The Versatile Grain and the Elegant Bean: A Celebration of the World’s Most Healthful Foods by Sheryl and Mel London

LOANED FROM: The Lawrence Public Library in Lawrence, Kansas
YEARS OVERDUE: 21

In 2014, someone anonymously returned this fitness-friendly cookbook, which had been missing since September 24, 1992. The volume, published that April, contains over 300 recipes—and it’s probably safe to assume that the culprit had plenty of time to try out every single one of them.

2. The Real Book About Snakes by Jane Sherman

LOANED FROM: The Champaign County Library in Urbana, Ohio 
YEARS OVERDUE: 41

Like the previous entry, whoever turned in this musty old field guide declined to reveal his name. But lest anyone question the man’s honesty, he also left the following note: “Sorry I’ve kept this book so long, but I’m a really slow reader! I’ve enclosed my fine of $299.30 (41 years, 2 cents a day). Once again, my apologies!”

3. Days and Deeds: A Book of Verse for Children’s Reading and Speaking compiled by Burton and Elizabeth Stevenson

LOANED FROM: The Kewanee Public Library in Kewanee, Illinois
YEARS OVERDUE: 47

According to Guinness World Records, the $345.14 fee paid by the borrower of this lyrical compilation stands as the highest library fine ever paid.

4. The Fire of Francis Xavier by Arthur R. McGratty

LOANED FROM: The New York Public Library, Fort Washington Branch, in New York, New York
YEARS OVERDUE: 55

In 2013, this one was discreetly mailed in and the perpetrator was never brought to justice (be on guard, Big Apple bibliophiles).

5. The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi

LOANED FROM: The Rugby Library in Warwick, England 
YEARS OVERDUE: 63

The item found its way home during an eight-day “fines amnesty period,” which shielded the guilty patron from a £4000 penalty. “It’s amazing to think how much the library has changed since that book was taken out in 1950,” said librarian Joanna Girdle. 

6. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

LOANED FROM: The Chicago Public Library in Chicago, Illinois 
YEARS OVERDUE: 78

Harlean Hoffman Vision found a rare edition of this novel nestled amongst her late mother’s personal effects and vowed to set things right. “She kept saying, ‘You’re not going to arrest me?’” recalled marketing director Ruth Lednicer, “and we said, ‘No, we’re so happy you brought it back.’”

7. Master of Men by E. Phillips Oppenheim

Amazon, Public Domain

LOANED FROM: The Leicester County Library in Leicester, England
YEARS OVERDUE: 79

Oppenheim was born in the surrounding region and, hence, the Leicestershire County Council was thrilled to reclaim this piece of their literary heritage after it turned up in a nearby house—even though the library branch it originally belonged to had shut down decades earlier.

8. Facts I Ought to Know About the Government of My Country by William H. Bartlett

Amazon, Public Domain

LOANED FROM: The New Bedford Public Library in New Bedford, Massachusetts
YEARS OVERDUE: 99

Stanley Dudek of Mansfield, Massachusetts claims that his mother—a Polish immigrant—decided to brush up on American politics by borrowing this volume from the New Bedford Library in 1910. “For a person who was just becoming a citizen, it was the perfect book for her,” says Dudek.

9. Insectivorous Plants by Charles Darwin

LOANED FROM: The Camden School of Arts Lending Library in Sydney, Australia
YEARS OVERDUE: 122

An Australian copy of Darwin’s treatise on bug-eating flora was borrowed in 1889. After two World Wars, Neil Armstrong’s moon landing, and the birth of the internet, it was finally returned on July 22, 2011.

10. The Ancient History of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Medes and Persians, Macedonians, and Grecians (volume II) by Charles Rollin

LOANED FROM: The Grace Doherty Library in Danville, Kentucky
YEARS OVERDUE: 150 (approximately)

In 2013, this tome was discovered at a neighboring school for the deaf, where it had presumably been stored since 1854 (as evidenced by a note written inside dating to that year). The library owns no records from this period, so exactly how long it was gone is anybody’s guess, but, said librarian Stan Campbell, “It’s been out of the library for at least 150 years."

11. The Law of Nations by Emmerich de Vattel

LOANED FROM: The New York Society Library in New York City
YEARS OVERDUE: 221

Five months into his first presidential term, George Washington borrowed this legal manifesto from the historic New York Society Library. For the next 221 years, it remained stowed away at his Virginia home, and organization officials wondered if they’d ever see it again. “We’re not actively pursuing overdue fines,” joked head librarian Mark Bartlett. “But we would be very happy to see the book returned.” His wish was granted when Mount Vernon staff finally sent it back in 2010 (luckily, they dodged a whopping $300,000 late fee).

An earlier version of this post appeared in 2014.

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11 Popular Quotes Commonly Misattributed to F. Scott Fitzgerald
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F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote a lot of famous lines, from musings on failure in Tender is the Night to “so we beat on, boats against the current” from The Great Gatsby. Yet even with a seemingly never-ending well of words and beautiful quotations, many popular idioms and phrases are wrongly attributed to the famous Jazz Age author, who was born on this day in 1896. Here are 11 popular phrases that are often misattributed to Fitzgerald. (You may need to update your Pinterest boards.)

1. “WRITE DRUNK, EDIT SOBER.”

This quote is often attributed to either Fitzgerald or his contemporary, Ernest Hemingway, who died in 1961. There is no evidence in the collected works of either writer to support that attribution; the idea was first associated with Fitzgerald in a 1996 Associated Press story, and later in Stephen Fry’s memoir More Fool Me. In actuality, humorist Peter De Vries coined an early version of the phrase in a 1964 novel titled Reuben, Reuben.

2. “FOR WHAT IT’S WORTH: IT’S NEVER TOO LATE OR, IN MY CASE, TOO EARLY TO BE WHOEVER YOU WANT TO BE.”

It’s easy to see where the mistake could be made regarding this quote: Fitzgerald wrote the short story “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” in 1922 for Collier's Magazine, and it was adapted into a movie of the same name, directed by David Fincher and starring Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett, in 2008. Eric Roth wrote the screenplay, in which that quotation appears.

3. “OUR LIVES ARE DEFINED BY OPPORTUNITIES, EVEN THE ONES WE MISS.”

This is a similar case to the previous quotation; this quote is attributed to Benjamin Button’s character in the film adaptation. It’s found in the script, but not in the original short story.

4. “YOU’LL UNDERSTAND WHY STORMS ARE NAMED AFTER PEOPLE.”

There is no evidence that Fitzgerald penned this line in any of his known works. In this Pinterest pin, it is attributed to his novel The Beautiful and Damned. However, nothing like that appears in the book; additionally, according to the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Association, although there were a few storms named after saints, and an Australian meteorologist was giving storms names in the 19th century, the practice didn’t become widespread until after 1941. Fitzgerald died in 1940.

5. “A SENTIMENTAL PERSON THINKS THINGS WILL LAST. A ROMANTIC PERSON HAS A DESPERATE CONFIDENCE THAT THEY WON’T.”

This exact quote does not appear in Fitzgerald’s work—though a version of it does, in his 1920 novel This Side of Paradise:

“No, I’m romantic—a sentimental person thinks things will last—a romantic person hopes against hope that they won’t. Sentiment is emotional.” The incorrect version is widely circulated and requoted.

6. “IT’S A FUNNY THING ABOUT COMING HOME. NOTHING CHANGES. EVERYTHING LOOKS THE SAME, FEELS THE SAME, EVEN SMELLS THE SAME. YOU REALIZE WHAT’S CHANGED IS YOU.”

This quote also appears in the 2008 The Curious Case of Benjamin Button script, but not in the original short story.

7. “GREAT BOOKS WRITE THEMSELVES; ONLY BAD BOOKS HAVE TO BE WRITTEN.”

There is no evidence of this quote in any of Fitzgerald’s writings; it mostly seems to circulate on websites like qotd.org, quotefancy.com and azquotes.com with no clarification as to where it originated.

8. “SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL, BUT NOT LIKE THOSE GIRLS IN THE MAGAZINES. SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL FOR THE WAY SHE THOUGHT. SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL FOR THE SPARKLE IN HER EYES WHEN SHE TALKED ABOUT SOMETHING SHE LOVED. SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL FOR HER ABILITY TO MAKE OTHER PEOPLE SMILE, EVEN IF SHE WAS SAD. NO, SHE WASN’T BEAUTIFUL FOR SOMETHING AS TEMPORARY AS HER LOOKS. SHE WAS BEAUTIFUL, DEEP DOWN TO HER SOUL.”

This quote may have originated in a memoir/advice book published in 2011 by Natalie Newman titled Butterflies and Bullshit, where it appears in its entirety. It was attributed to Fitzgerald in a January 2015 Thought Catalog article, and was quoted as written by an unknown source in Hello, Beauty Full: Seeing Yourself as God Sees You by Elisa Morgan, published in September 2015. However, there’s no evidence that Fitzgerald said or wrote anything like it.

9. “AND IN THE END, WE WERE ALL JUST HUMANS, DRUNK ON THE IDEA THAT LOVE, ONLY LOVE, COULD HEAL OUR BROKENNESS.”

Christopher Poindexter, the successful Instagram poet, wrote this as part of a cycle of poems called “the blooming of madness” in 2013. After a Twitter account called @SirJayGatsby tweeted the phrase with no attribution, it went viral as being attributed to Fitzgerald. Poindexter has addressed its origin on several occasions.

10. “YOU NEED CHAOS IN YOUR SOUL TO GIVE BIRTH TO A DANCING STAR.”

This poetic phrase is actually derived from the work of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, who died in 1900, just four years after Fitzgerald was born in 1896. In his book Thus Spake ZarathustraNietzsche wrote the phrase, “One must have chaos within to enable one to give birth to a dancing star.” Over time, it’s been truncated and modernized into the currently popular version, which was included in the 2009 book You Majored in What?: Designing Your Path from College to Career by Katharine Brooks.

11. “FOR THE GIRLS WITH MESSY HAIR AND THIRSTY HEARTS.”

This quote is the dedication in Jodi Lynn Anderson’s book Tiger Lily, a reimagining of the classic story of Peter Pan. While it is often attributed to Anderson, many Tumblr pages and online posts cite Fitzgerald as its author.

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