The Avatar director spoke with The Hollywood Reporterin an interview published on Wednesday, where he doubled down on his criticisms of the hit superhero film, and said he'll "stand by" his controversial remarks.
The acclaimed director took a lot of heat last month when he spoke with The Guardian while promoting the remastered re-release of Terminator 2. Cameron said at the time that Wonder Woman had been getting too much credit for being a feminist film.
"She's an objectified icon, and it's just male Hollywood doing the same old thing," the director expressed. "I'm not saying I didn't like the movie but, to me, it's a step backwards."
The Oscar-winning filmmaker went on to claim that Linda Hamilton's portrayal of Terminator hero Sarah Connor constituted a real feminist hero, because she "was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit."
Following his remarks, Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins fired back with a strongly worded open letter that said Cameron's "inability to understand what Wonder Woman is, or stands for, to woman all over the world is unsurprising as, though he is a great filmmaker, he is not a woman," adding, "There is no right and wrong kind of powerful woman."
"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," Cameron said. "They had Raquel Welch doing stuff like that in the '60s."
Cameron went on to say that his remarks were originally intended simply to provide a contrast to how Hamilton played her iconic character in the Terminator franchise.
"What Linda created in 1991 — was, if not ahead of its time, at least a breakthrough in its time. I don't think it was really ahead of its time because we're still not [giving women these types of roles]."
Cameron also responded to Jenkins' pointed reaction to his comments, particularly her assertion that a woman doesn't have to be "hard, tough and trouble to be strong."
"Linda looked great. She just wasn't treated as a sex object. There was nothing sexual about her character… She wasn't there to be liked or ogled, but she was central, and the audience loved her by the end of the film," Cameron said.
Cameron also revealed that he was "shocked" to learn that his original comments were considered controversial, adding, "It was pretty obvious in my mind."
However, he did admit that, in retrospect, it was "probably a little bit of a simplistic remark on my part."
"I'm not walking it back," he added. "But I will add a little detail to it, which is: I like the fact that, sexually, [Wonder Woman] had the upper hand with the male character, which I thought was fun."