Because gender equality is also awesome, “The Lego Movie 2” will have a bigger female presence, according to director Chris McKay.
Beyond its prominent heroine Wildstyle (voiced by Elizabeth Banks), “The Lego Movie” features few female characters, although Wildstyle has multiple interactions with Unikitty (Alison Brie).
The rest of the film's main characters are played by Chris Pratt, Morgan Freeman, Will Ferrell and Liam Neeson, while Cobie Smulders voices Wonder Woman in a cameo role.
“I”m not sure our movie passes the Bechdel test entirely and I think that it's important,” McKay admitted to Daily Mail Online. “We have a lot of producers [who] were female who had concerns and we were always constantly saying to ourselves: 'Are we just a bunch of white guys sitting here making this movie from our own myopic point of view?'”
The Bechdel Test, so named for acclaimed comic writer Alison Bechdel (“Fun Home”), asks whether a published work features at least two named female characters who have at least one conversation about something other a man.
“We were constantly responding to that question and that helped us make Wyldstyle a better character and Unikitty a more interesting character,” McKay continued. “I think it's forcing us to look at how we make a sequel and turn that into something that's more powerful and special.”
The sequel is still being developed, so the plot line and any new characters probably won't be revealed for some time. Will Wonder Woman have a bigger role the second time around?
“Obviously you have to look at the kind of story you”re trying to tell and the theme, but people don't underestimate the value of hard, cool female characters who have their own agency,” McKay added. “That”s the thing we”re not doing enough as filmmakers.”
Animation vet McKay co-directed the first film with Chris Miller and Phil Lord (“22 Jump Street”), and is taking over as director for the sequel.
The first film has so far grossed a huge $410 million worldwide.
“The Lego Movie 2” is scheduled to be released May 26, 2017.