Wonder Woman 1984 doesn’t hit HBO Max (and, oh yeah, whatever movie theaters remain open, too) until Friday, and while it’s been slightly divisive amongst critics, there’s one aspect of it almost everyone can agree on: Pedro Pascal’s villain Maxwell Lord is clearly supposed to be Donald Trump. Or is he? In a new interview with Variety, star Gal Gadot insists that the cast and crew were a little slow to pick up that a bad guy who’s also an ’80s businessman, television personality, and con man could have similarities with a president who’s been all of those things.
“It’s interesting because when we shot it, we didn’t really think about it until we got to the White House. And then we’re like, ‘Hmm,’” Gadot claims. She points to how Lord, like all comic book characters, has so many different iterations, and that theirs just happened to be Trumpian. Besides, she insists, he’s a far more complicated baddie than America’s 45th president.
“The thing about Maxwell Lord in our movie, unlike the comics, is that he’s more complex because he’s not just an evil villain,” Gadot said. “He is a regular person who wants to be all these things that you would see on TV. I know from Pedro while we were shooting the movie, that at a certain point, he just focused on the page and what was there. And along with Patty, they just created this character. But we never tried to mimic anybody else. We never tried to mimic Trump or anything.”
Whether or not you buy Gadot’s claim — that Pascal’s Maxwell Lord just happened to look an awful lot like Wall Street’s Gordon Gekko, who was, if not directly modeled on Donald Trump, then was of a similar type — is something everyone can find out when 1984 finally drops on Christmas Day.