Entertainment Weekly‘s Summer 2012 movie preview issue features Christian Bale and Anne Hathaway as their costumed counterparts in The Dark Knight Rises on the cover – which you can see HERE – along with numerous additional still frames from filmmaker Christopher Nolan’s hotly-anticipated Batman trilogy finale and interviews with such people as Tom Hardy (who’s playing Bane, of course) and Hathaway.

Until official versions of those Dark Knight Rises photos pop up online (since we don’t post scans), we can offer you the interview tidbits with the thespians behind the film’s masked antiheroine/villain, respectively. Among the topics they touch on are the attitude and physique of the new Selina Kyle/Catwoman – as well as the controversy concerning Hardy-as-Bane’s muffled vocal tones.

[UPDATE: EW has officially released those Dark Knight Rises images online!]

Most of the complaints concerning Bane’s voice stem from screenings of the Dark Knight Rises‘ prologue last winter – though, as our own Kofi Outlaw noted, the incomplete sound mixing for that scene in general was the real problem in need of correction. Still, here’s an excerpt from the EW report, where Hardy addresses the issue:

“It’s a risk, because we could be laughed at — or it could be very fresh and exciting,” says Hardy, adding that the voice he developed was influenced by many factors, including a desire to honor the comic book character’s brains and Caribbean heritage. “The audience mustn’t be too concerned about the mumbly voice,” says Hardy. “As the film progresses, I think you’ll be able to tune to its setting.”

What with his threatening mask – which costume designer Lindy Hemming has said was inspired by a silverback gorilla’s fangs – and Hardy’s intimidating screen presence (see: Bronson, Warrior), there’s good reason to think Bane will be a worthy foe, as presented in Dark Knight Rises.

Besides that, Bane has traditionally relied more on his sheer physical presence in order to get under the Caped Crusader’s skin anyway (unlike the Joker in The Dark Knight). Talk just isn’t the big guy’s main modus operandi.

Moving on – here’s Hathaway talking about her prep work for playing Selina Kyle, who Nolan describes as having “an underlying darkness” in Dark Knight Rises:

“I had to physically transform. Chris [Nolan] sat me down at the beginning and said, ‘Joseph Gordon-Levitt did all of his own fighting in ‘Inception’That one zero-gravity fight? He trained for two months.’ I basically left his office and went to the gym and just came out about five minutes ago.”

As evidenced by reactions to the most recent promo image of Hathaway in her Catwoman duds, no amount of physical training will seemingly be enough to ward off complaints about the character’s high-tech goggles as “cat ears” accessory (or her spiked boots) in Dark Knight Rises. That is, no one’s really going to change their mind about the look either way, until they see some actual footage of Hathaway in action.

If nothing else, the actress has already demonstrated that she can be sultry and seductive onscreen (see: Havoc, Love and Other Drugs) as is called for by a classic femme fatale like Selina Kyle. The Dark Knight Rises‘ rating has already ensured we shouldn’t be getting a spayed Catwoman (pun intended), in that respect.

As for all you readers out there who have been wondering when we might get to see said new footage from The Dark Knight Rises – including a better look at both Hardy and Hathaway in the film – you can probably expect a new trailer to premiere in a few weeks’ time. Once The Avengers is done soaking up the sun (as far as marketing goes) and the comic book movie spotlight shifts to Chris Nolan’s last Batman flick, that is.

The Dark Knight Rises will open in theaters around the U.S. on July 20th, 2012.

Source: EW