The tissue box is empty, our hearts are heavy and the eyes are still soaked with tears. Endgame might or might not have ended Thanos’ reign of terror but it surely ended us. Speaking of Endgame, look out for Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel; the celestial super-being is set to rock the MCU. However, while Larson sets sail on the MCU boat and the world recovers from the rollercoaster ride that Endgame is, let us turn our attention to the DC camp and the trailblazer who has been taking it by storm ever since she donned the shield and the Lasso of Truth. As Gal Gadot turns 34 today and we are completely in awe of the absolute wonder this woman is.
Life And Career
Known to many as Gisele Yashar in the Fast and Furious franchise and many more as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman, Gal Gadot is a prominent Israeli model and actress. She made waves in both the professions. The feisty woman, who has served in the Israel Defense Forces for two years, started her career by winning the Miss Israel pageant and representing her country in the prestigious Miss Universe pageant. She went on to bag several lucrative modeling jobs for brands such as Gucci fragrances, Jaguar cars, Captain Morgan and Huawei smartphones. She graced the covers of esteemed magazines like Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Entertainment Weekly, Maxim, Fashion and FHM.
The advertisement campaigns were targeted at both the Israeli and American markets, ensuring Gadot’s rise and reign as one of the most prominent Israeli faces in the modeling industry. Her success as a model eventually transformed into a prospect for an acting career. She was cast in the role of Gisele Yashar after initially being considered for playing the role of the Bond girl in Quantum of Solace. Playing the role of Gisele put her on the map and helped her bag roles in movies like Date Night and Knight and Day.
She has also starred in movies such as Triple 9 and Criminal with stars such as Kate Winslet, Gary Oldman and Kevin Costner. She then played one of the leads in the action-comedy Keeping Up With the Joneses alongside Jon Hamm, Isla Fisher and Zach Gafflianakis. However, her most prominent role has been playing the Amazonian princess Diana and her alter ego, Wonder Woman, one of the most superior superheroines of all times.
The character of Wonder Woman was prominent at times female superheroes were not as revered as they are now. Thus, carving a niche for itself across the platforms of comic books and television. Gal Gadot’s reprise is the first portrayal of the character on the big screen as she played the Themysciran warrior in Batman v Superman:Dawn of Justice. Again, the Patty Jenkins-directed Wonder Woman and the ensemble Justice League, solidifying her position in the big leagues of the entertainment industry.
The true power and figure of Gadot, though, lies not in her filmography or her impressive modeling resume. It persists in her recognition of her own identity and her reinstatement of it. Gal Gadot is a Jewish woman who has grown up in a country and a family that has never ceased to remind her of it. She has embraced her Jewish roots, and proudly so. Her maternal grandfather was imprisoned in an Auschtwitz concentration camp and was fortunate enough to survive the Holocaust while her maternal grandmother fled her home before the Nazi invasion.
Gal served in the Israel Defense Forces as a combat instructor for 2 years. This is as per requirement by the laws of the nation. She strives to exemplify her upbringing in her career. This is clear in her idea of changing the image of Jewish women in an industry. Rather than generally being portrayed as unattractive or funny sidekicks, she took to the centre. Gadot reveals her Jewish ancestry while also ensuring that she does not cede to stereotypes surrounding her culture.
She does not shy away from taking a political stand. On various occasions, she has taken to criticising Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his statement of how the country belongs to the Jewish. She believes that he needs to only focus on the main motive of any political stand – peace.
While comic book fans can never really compare Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman and Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel; the two women comparably talk of male skepticism. As soon as Gal landed the role, comic book fans lashed out at the decision, singling out Gadot’s physical appearance. Many fans felt that she was too skinny or lanky to play the role. They repeatedly brought her sexual appeal into question, going to the extent of commenting on the size of her breasts.
Parts of the media played into the criticism. Thus, managing to cast a cloud of pessimism over her casting. Gadot was unnerved by the backlash. Taking it in her stride and managing to direct her focus on doing the best she could. She thus, managed to set a majority of skepticism aside by doing her own stunts for most of her movies. In an industry full of patriarchy, Gadot has cemented her place. Even though, often playing strong characters that have been victim to own share of sexism and sexualizing. However, Gadot ensures that she does not let the hate get in her way. She strives to be unforgettable and make a statement that she has arrived, at the same time.
Gal is a woman of today; strong, determined and one who refuses to let the world put her down. She is an idol for young girls all over the world. That that she has made waves should come of little surprise, considering her first name means ‘wave’ in Hebrew. Here is hoping she has a great birthday and continues to win the world!