Remake & Reboot: The Catwoman Movie

Arguably the third most popular character out of DC's Batman franchise, Catwoman hasn't had any luck when it comes to telling her own story on film. She was a featured player in the Adam West Batman ensemble, and was primed for a solo film after Michelle Pfieffer's performance in 1992's Batman Returns, but when that finally came true in 2004's Catwoman it stunk up cinema worse than week old kitty litter.

But fans and critics agre — Catwoman remains a goldmine in film. And with news that Christopher Nolan is bringing in the character for the upcoming film The Dark Knight Rises, there's more than a chance that if Anne Hathaway plays her role right then a solo Catwoman film would be in store. So let's explore that.

Note that this edition of Remake & Reboot teeters far on the ledge of speculation, but if Catwoman's appearance in The Dark Knight Rises excels as much as people hope then Hollywood needs to be ready.

The Concept:
While the details of Catwoman's role in The Dark Knight Rises is under wraps, there's still room for speculation on where it could take her next. What if you skipped the origin and went straight into a standalone heist movie featuring Anne Hathaway as Catwoman? I'd take pages (literally!) from Darwyn Cooke's Catwoman: Selina's Big Score graphic novel and craft a crime caper that mixes crime noir with the theatrics of Ocean's Eleven. Add in an aged mentor named Stark, a former beau in Slam Bradley and the best friend in Holly Robinson and you'd be set. Catwoman doesn't need to be dark like Batman; Selina Kyle has a whole range of styles and settings that film-makers could take advantage of. And make sure you use Cooke's redesigned Catwoman costume from 2001.

The Director:
The director of Catwoman needs to be many things: someone with experience filming action movies and a good rapport with stunt coordinators, someone who can control an action-based film from turning into a senseless action movie, and someone with the ability to shape and excel at a female-led film. For my money (or Warner's, rather), I would go with Len Wiseman. He's a self-made man who rose to fame directing a story he co-created in Underworld. He directed 2007s' fourth installment in the Die Hard franchise, and while it didn't live up to the heightened expectations of the franchise it is still the most successful of the previous 3 films. He's currently working on a remake of Total Recall, but putting Wiseman in the director's chair for Catwoman would be a wise move for both the director and the studio.

The Cast:

Selina Kyle / Catwoman — Anne Hathaway: Hathaway's already a lock to play Selina in Nolan's next Batman flick, and a solo Catwoman film would be the cat's meow for this young Hollywood player. She has the good-girl vibes with real acting chops as shown in Rachel Getting Married and Love and Other Drugs. She'd be the eighth actress to play Catwoman on screen, but the first to lead up a successful Catwoman film.

Stark — Vincent Cassel: Although he's probably best known for his roles in Ocean's Twelve and Black Swan, Cassel is the heir apparent in french cinema after his crime movie Mesrine a few years back. This forty-four year old actor can convey the dangerousness and the allure that would attract a woman like Selina Kyle.

Slam Bradley — John Slattery: An old-school private eye who's a throwback to DC's crime comics roots — who better than John Slattery? Yes, he's already make his comic flick debut in Iron Man 2 as Tony Stark's father, but if Ryan Reynolds can play in both the DC and Marvel sandbox then so can Slattery. He has the familiar mix of old-school charm with the ability to seem like he's been the ringer — did you see his performance in 30 Rock last year?


  1. Catwoman in any movie by default is terrible.

  2. @KickAss  I disagree. If anyone can make her viable, it’s Nolan. And if they did Selina’s Big Score, it’d be a runaway hit.

    I’d get Soderberg over Weisman for this movie, though. Maybe even Paul Greengrass. The movie has to equal the frenetic pace of Darwyn’s underrated masterpiece.

    Just as an aside, I would cast Jon Hamm as Ted Grant, aka Wildcat (who doesn’t appear in the book, but could make a cameo).

  3. @KickAss  — no way. Catwoman is one of the historically most interesting/important villains in the Bat universe. Agreed w/ vito if they did something like Selina’s Big Score that would be just killer.

    She’s a brass ring type of villain for movies. A right mix of sex appeal with evil. They will keep trying with her until they get it right. I’m sure Nolan will. 

    @VitoDelsante  -Yeah i like John Hamm as Wildcat, but he’s too big a name to play a supporting JLA character like that don’t you think? 

  4. While I think a Catwoman film could have the potential to be great, it’s become a punch line that I don’t know if people could overcome and give it a chance. It’ll be interesting to see how the similarly hated “Daredevil” can succeed it in it’s new reboot. 

  5. The casting is right on, but I would pick someone like Peter Berg or dare I say it, Edgar Wright, to direct.

  6. That casting is great, but I feel like the previous film has done to much damage to the character.  I love the Selina character, but I’m just not sure.

  7. John Slattery just looks like he walked right off of a Darwyn Cooke page.

  8. John Slattery is pretty awesome, i totally forgot he was in iron man 2, probably because i’ve basically forgotten that entire movie

  9. I dont like Hathaway at all, I’ve seen the movies where shes supposed to have shown off her acting ability but I’m consistently surprised that people rate her amongst good actors and often wonder if shes in there more due to the hollywood puplicity machine rather than true acting chops. She really isnt anything remarkable in the films mentioned above. That said, I stand perfectly willing to be proved wrong by her performance in the Dark Knight Rises as I was by the otherwise ignorable Heath Ledger. 

    That aside, was it stated that she would play ‘Catwoman’ or simply ‘Selina Kyle’ in the next Batman movie? Is it possible that she may not be ‘Catwoman’ as such but rather a thief named Selina Kyle?

    As for a movie, I wouldnt spend to see it in all honesty. 

  10. I would watch this movie. The casting seems good, a good caper movie would be awesome. As far as directors go, its easy to see how it might not work because we have a 104 minute example of everything that can go wrong. But just try and think of how very right it could be!

  11. Being that Catwoman is my absolute favorite character in comics, this is an idea I’ve had as well. I think theres lots of potential for a gritty noirish but still fun superhero film with Catwoman. That said, I think Selina’s big Score is a terrible story for a film, I love Darwyn Cooke but that story was is probably his weakest project ever, and it really served no purpose at all other than for him to create his Stark character(who he admitted is just Parker). I think Ed Brubakers run is really the direction they should go.
    Also, I know its early but I just cant wrap my head around Anne Hathaway as Catwoman yet. Yes shes fine actress, I wont deny that but there is absolutely no trace for Selina Kyle in her performances like Rachels Getting Married or others, and I just dont see this adorable girl next door being able to convincingly play my favorite femme fatale cat burglar who grew up on the mean streets of the Gotham.
    PS. The picture you placed for Stark isnt Stark, that was the other character in Selinas Big Score
  12. @kidcharlemagne: I agree completely about Hathaway. Her star is a product of the Hollywood publicity machine. She’s a DECENT actress, but not all that impressive. She’s competent and does a good job, nothing more. It’s really amazing how much acting in general has declined in the last few decades of Hollywood.

    That said, you don’t need a great actor/actress to make a good movie. For something like Catwoman… I’m not saying it’s inherently low-brow, but it doesn’t demand oodles of talent. She could make a fun movie and bring some believability to the role. Halle Berry is a better actress, but they just went totally the wrong route with that movie. Just don’t treat the property with a bit more respect, and Hathaway would be fine.

    On the other hand, for some of those same reasons, I’m unsure about Hathaway in a Chris Nolan movie. Nolan isn’t quite Stanley Kubrick or Orson Welles, but his movies are nonetheless… a little arty. I think Hathaway’s presence in Dark Knight Rises might be a bit of a negative as it will break the mood.

  13. *^Oops, I meant “JUST TREAT the property with a bit more respect”.

  14. @wallythegreenmonster  Is Hamm really that big of a name? Don’t get me wrong. I like the guy and enjoy his performances, but he’s not Matthew McConaghey (sp) or Tom Cruise…he’s yet to be a leading man in a feature film. Hell, he’s not even Joseph Gordon Levitt.

    That said, what better role than that of a second tier character to make your own?

  15. @VitoDelsante  –i think Hamm is a pretty big name actor at this point, but maybe just in certain circles. He was really good in “The Town”. I think he’s bigger than McCona-Hey HEY hey. Haha

    yeah good point about making it your own. Any good actor could do that. I’m sure the right actor could make snapper carr interesting, ha

  16. Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    @VitoDelsante  While I can’t claim to speak for the mainstream, I think Hamm is more of a superstar than you think. That said…I like the Wildcat idea. A LOT. 

  17. I am *completely* sold on this.

  18. Considering the fate that women in Nolan films usually face, I wouldn’t hold out too much hope for a Catwoman spin-off.

    Great ideas here though.