Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman Spinoff Movie Is Incredible

By Robert Scucci | Published

michelle pfeiffer catwoman

Did you know that Tim Burton and Daniel Waters almost worked with Michelle Pfeiffer on a Catwoman spinoff after the commercial success of Batman Returns? What’s more, there were two completely different versions that were talked about, but failed to materialize. Though neither project got past the development stages, we would have ended up seeing either a low-budget black-and-white drama or a more comical, satirical take on the Batman universe.

Tim Burton’s Black And White Spinoff

Talks of a Michelle Pfeiffer starring Catwoman spinoff began in the mid 1990s, and Tim Burton had the wild idea of shooting an $18 million black-and-white movie that paid homage to Jacques Tourneur’s Cat People. This version of the film would have been a bit darker than Batman Returns. And if it stayed true to the source material that inspired it, would be more of a dramatic supernatural horror film than a full-on superhero movie.

Daniel Water’s Comedic Version

Daniel Waters had his own idea for Michelle Pfeiffer that would have been a little bit more unhinged, and a lot more comedic for her Catwoman character. Waters, who wrote the screenplay for Returns, wrote a satirical screenplay that would have been set in a version of Los Angeles that bore a striking resemblance to Gotham. In this version, Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman would have been an amnesiac living in a city that’s run by three superheroes who want to maintain a virtuous public image despite their corruption behind closed doors. Waters’ version would have functioned as a sequel, as well as a subversive and self-referential take on the superhero genre. Though it would have been interesting to see Michelle Pfeiffer take on either version of Catwoman, the project was ultimately shelved.

Warner Bros.’ Disappointment With Batman Returns

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Despite the project’s failure to materialize, Batman Returns’ legacy remains intact to this day. But when the film first came out in 1992, it was met with polarizing reviews, and widely criticized for being so dark that it alienated family audiences. Though Michelle Pfeiffer was universally praised for her portrayal of Catwoman, Warner Bros. wasn’t happy with the film’s overall critical reception, and decided to have Joel Schumacher helm the next two Batman movies to take the franchise in a more family-friendly direction.

Batman Returns Gained Favor Over The Years

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But as retroactive reviews started rolling in years later and both Batman Forever and Batman & Robin both failed miserably on the critical front, Batman Returns was given a more favorable reassessment. In fact, it’s now considered one of the best Batman movies ever made.

Michelle Pfeiffer’s Spinoff Could’ve Made History

If either version of the Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman movie were to be fully realized, there’s no telling how they would have been received by critics and comic book fans at the time of its initial release. On one hand, Catwoman was a fan-favorite, and a prime candidate for a spinoff. On the other hand, both Burton and Waters had wildly different concepts that they wanted to execute, and both were quite risky.One thing we do know, however, is that if Michelle Pfeiffer reprised her role as Catwoman, we’d be living on wildly different timeline. On this timeline, we could have avoided witnessing 2004’s Catwoman, which received seven Golden Raspberry nominations upon its release, and ended up winning four of them. Source: IndieWire