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Anne Hathaway’s “Dark Knight Rises” Catwoman: How does it compare to previous versions?

Anne Hathaway’s “Dark Knight Rises” Catwoman: How does it compare to previous versions? (photo)

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From the campy 1960s-era version of Catwoman to the version of the character seen in the upcoming “Batman: Arkham City” video game, the on-screen incarnations of Gotham’s feline-friendly burglar have changed quite a bit over the years. Today we got our first look at Anne Hathaway as Catwoman in “The Dark Knight Rises,” and given the character’s long history in the comics world, this first image offers a lot to ponder for Bat-fans.

In order to get some perspective on what Hathaway’s take on the character may or may not share with its predecessors, we’ve put together a list of some of Catwoman’s most notable on-screen iterations and compared them to what we’ve seen so far from “The Dark Knight Rises.”


Julie Newmar & Eartha Kitt “Batman” (1966)

Both Newmar and Kitt sported the same Catwoman costume on the 1960s live-action “Batman” television series, and it’s not surprising that Christopher Nolan appears to be distancing his version of Selina Kyle from one of the character’s more campy iterations. While there is a bit of a shine to Hathaway’s outfit, it’s nowhere near the metallic sparkle of Newmar and Kitt’s slinky costume, which was actually constructed by Newmar herself.


Michelle Pfeiffer, “Batman Returns” (1992)

When Tim Burton brought Batman back for a sequel, he introduced a new, live-action version of Catwoman, too. Pfeiffer’s take on Catwoman was very much in the Burton style: a slightly mad, disturbingly dangerous, and ultra-sexy version of the character. Her costume was composed of skin-tight vinyl that covered most of her body (but left little to the imagination), and only portions of her face were seen under a cat-eared mask. As expected, Hathaway’s look is significantly less S&M (and more H&M) than Pfeiffer’s take on the character.


“Batman: The Animated Series” (1992) – Voiced by Adrienne Barbeau

Catwoman’s costume in this fan-favorite series retained the form-fitting, one-piece suit she’d been sporting in the comics and on the big screen (“Batman Returns” was released just a few months before the cartoon premiered). However, instead of shiny vinyl, this animated Catwoman robbed from the rich while wearing a dull gray costume with black boots, gloves, and portions of her mask. She also retained the whip her character has wielded from her early days. Though this look is a little closer to Hathaway’s Selina Kyle, it’s still a far cry from what we’ve seen of the “Dark Knight Rises” actress thus far.


Halle Berry, “Catwoman” (2004)

What to say about this number? Berry’s Razzie-winning turn as Catwoman invoked no small amount of criticism, and her costume was by far the most skin-revealing of all the the on-screen iterations. Once again reverting back to the bondage-queen motif, Berry’s look in this film included a bizarre helmet/mask combination and clawed gloves, with the latter being the only truly notable nod to the character’s past costumes. While there were probably a lot of people hoping to see Hathaway in a costume resembling Berry’s “Catwoman” ensemble, everything we’ve seen so far – and let’s face it, common sense — says not to expect any nods to this low point in the character’s history.


“The Batman” (2004) – voiced by Gina Gershon

Returning to the one-piece, form-fitting look of “Batman: The Animated Series,” this version of Catwoman sports a black, skin-tight costume and mask with massive “ears” and large googles that make her look even more cat-like than previous iterations. She also carries her whip on her lower back, making it appear as if she has a tail. While this version of the character also differs greatly from what we’ve seen of Hathaway’s Catwoman, the “Dark Knight rises” photo released today does show her with a pair of high-tech goggles. That’s pretty much where the similarities end, though.


“Batman: The Brave and the Bold” (2008)

Created as a nostalgic throwback to Batman’s campier days, this animated series featured a Catwoman more in line with the character’s Golden Age design. Instead of blacks or grays (or shiny vinyl), the “Brave and the Bold” Catwoman dressed in bright purple, and instead of head-to-toe spandex, she wore a long skirt. One thing she does have in common with Hathaway’s Catwoman (and the Newmar/Kitt versions of the character) is that she doesn’t hide away her long hair underneath her mask.


“Batman: Arkham City” (2011) – voiced by Grey DeLisle

Probably the closest approximation to what we’ll see Hathaway wear as Catwoman in “The Dark Knight Rises” is the version of the character seen in early images from the “Batman: Arkham City” video game. A more utilitarian, military design is the key to the game’s take on Catwoman, and it was inspired by the grittier tone of her comic counterpart these days. Less sexpot and more cat burglar, this version of Catwoman is still easy on the eyes, but also comes equipped with high-tech gear like we see Hathaway wielding in the most recent “Dark Knight Rises” image. Heck, if you look closely, you can even see that Hathaway has a zipper pull right up by the neckline of her outfit, much like her counterpart in “Arkham City” — though the latter spends most of her time with it unzipped.


What do you think of Hathaway’s Catwoman costume so far? Which Catwoman was your favorite over the years? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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Reality? Check.

Baroness For Life

Baroness von Sketch Show is available for immediate consumption.

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Baroness von Sketch Show is snowballing as people have taken note of its subtle and not-so-subtle skewering of everyday life. The New York Times, W Magazine, and Vogue have heaped on the praise, but IFC had a few more probing questions…

IFC: To varying degrees, your sketches are simply scripted examples of things that actually happen. What makes real life so messed up?

Aurora: Hubris, Ego and Selfish Desires and lack of empathy.

Carolyn: That we’re trapped together in the 3rd Dimension.

Jenn: 1. Other people 2. Other people’s problems 3. Probably something I did.

IFC: A lot of people I know have watched this show and realized, “Dear god, that’s me.” or “Dear god, that’s true.” Why do people have their blinders on?

Aurora: Because most people when you’re in the middle of a situation, you don’t have the perspective to step back and see yourself because you’re caught up in the moment. That’s the job of comedians is to step back and have a self-awareness about these things, not only saying “You’re doing this,” but also, “You’re not the only one doing this.” It’s a delicate balance of making people feel uncomfortable and comforting them at the same time.

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IFC: Unlike a lot of popular sketch comedy, your sketches often focus more on group dynamics vs iconic individual characters. Why do you think that is and why is it important?

Meredith: We consider the show to be more based around human dynamics, not so much characters. If anything we’re more attracted to the energy created by people interacting.

Jenn: So much of life is spent trying to work it out with other people, whether it’s at work, at home, trying to commute to work, or even on Facebook it’s pretty hard to escape the group.

IFC: Are there any comedians out there that you feel are just nailing it?

Aurora: I love Key and Peele. I know that their show is done and I’m in denial about it, but they are amazing because there were many times that I would imagine that Keegan Michael Key was in the scene while writing. If I could picture him saying it, I knew it would work. I also kind of have a crush on Jordan Peele and his performance in Big Mouth. Maya Rudolph also just makes everything amazing. Her puberty demon on Big Mouth is flawless. She did an ad for 7th generation tampons that my son, my husband and myself were singing around the house for weeks. If I could even get anything close to her career, I would be happy. I’m also back in love with Rick and Morty. I don’t know if I have a crush on Justin Roiland, I just really love Rick (maybe even more than Morty). I don’t have a crush on Jerry, the dad, but I have a crush on Chris Parnell because he’s so good at being Jerry.

Jenn: I LOVE ISSA RAE!

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IFC: If you could go back in time and cast yourselves in any sitcom, which would it be and how would it change?

Carolyn: I’d go back in time and cast us in The Partridge Family.  We’d make an excellent family band. We’d have a laugh, break into song and wear ruffled blouses with velvet jackets.  And of course travel to all our gigs on a Mondrian bus. I feel really confident about this choice.

Meredith: Electric Mayhem from The Muppet Show. It wouldn’t change, they were simply perfect, except… maybe a few more vaginas in the band.

Binge the entire first and second seasons of Baroness von Sketch Show now on IFC.com and the IFC app.

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G.I. Jeez

Stomach Bugs and Prom Dates

E.Coli High is in your gut and on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Brothers-in-law Kevin Barker and Ben Miller have just made the mother of all Comedy Crib series, in the sense that their Comedy Crib series is a big deal and features a hot mom. Animated, funny, and full of horrible bacteria, the series juxtaposes timeless teen dilemmas and gut-busting GI infections to create a bite-sized narrative that’s both sketchy and captivating. The two sat down, possibly in the same house, to answer some questions for us about the series. Let’s dig in….

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IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

BEN: Hi ummm uhh hi ok well its like umm (gets really nervous and blows it)…

KB: It’s like the Super Bowl meets the Oscars.

IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

BEN: Oh wow, she’s really cute isn’t she? I’d definitely blow that too.

KB: It’s a cartoon that is happening inside your stomach RIGHT NOW, that’s why you feel like you need to throw up.

IFC: What was the genesis of E.Coli High?

KB: I had the idea for years, and when Ben (my brother-in-law, who is a special needs teacher in Philly) began drawing hilarious comics, I recruited him to design characters, animate the series, and do some writing. I’m glad I did, because Ben rules!

BEN: Kevin told me about it in a park and I was like yeah that’s a pretty good idea, but I was just being nice. I thought it was dumb at the time.

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IFC: What makes going to proms and dating moms such timeless and oddly-relatable subject matter?

BEN: Since the dawn of time everyone has had at least one friend with a hot mom. It is physically impossible to not at least make a comment about that hot mom.

KB: Who among us hasn’t dated their friend’s mom and levitated tables at a prom?

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

BEN: There’s a lot of content now. I don’t think anyone will even notice, but it’d be cool if they did.

KB: A show about talking food poisoning bacteria is basically the same as just watching the news these days TBH.

Watch E.Coli High below and discover more NYTVF selections from years past on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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