Michelle Pfeiffer would have played Catwoman again in a “heartbeat,” had she been given the chance. Pfeiffer made the role of Selina Kyle/Catwoman her own in Tim Burton’s dark 1992 blockbuster Batman Returns. She played the downtrodden secretary who transforms into the vengeful vigilante after her boss tries to kill her.
Halle Berry and Anne Hathaway have both played the character in subsequent live-action movies, but Pfeiffer’s performance is easily considered the most iconic take on Catwoman on the big screen. Unfortunately, Pfeiffer’s Catwoman never reappeared in later sequels – though given the quality of the Schumacher Batman era that might be for the best.
Catwoman still holds a special place in the actress’ heart, and when asked in a New York Times interview if she would have reprised the role for a solo movie, she doesn’t even have to think about it.
Are you kidding me? In a heartbeat. I loved that part. I felt like I was just getting comfortable and getting used to the claws and the mask, just figuring out how to move in all of that. There was a little bit of talk about that, then that kind of faded away.
While Batman Returns is well regarded now, the dark tone and kinkiness of the movie resulted in a backlash upon release. Warner Bros. decided to make Batman Forever more family friendly as a result, but they felt a solo adventure with Catwoman might be worth pursuing. Both Pfeiffer and Tim Burton were interested, and a script was developed where Selina – who suffers amnesia following the events of Returns – ends up in a Vegas-style city run by male superheroes. She has to don her outfit again when a threat emerges the other heroes can’t handle.
In a case of bad timing, this dark script arrived around the same time Forever hit big, which seemingly proved audiences wanted something lighter. Burton and Pfeiffer lost interest, and the project lingered in development hell for years before emerging as the infamous 2004 Catwoman movie starring Halle Berry. There was briefly a notion of Pfeiffer making a cameo in Batman Unchained, which was Joel Schumacher’s planned fifth movie. Catwoman would appear in a hallucination sequence alongside other iconic villains like Jack Nicholson’s Joker and Danny DeVito’s Penguin. Warners ultimately decided to cancel this sequel following the reaction to Batman & Robin. It’s a shame Pfeiffer didn’t get a second shot with the role because she would have been awesome in a solo Catwoman movie.
Source: The New York Times