INTERVIEW: Catwoman Director Pitof

Wizard magazine did a short interview with Catwoman director Pitof and discovered, among other things, that he didn't use the comics as research to develop "his" version of Catwoman. Also, he says he's PROUD of the Catwoman costume!

Why do so many

Wizard magazine did a short interview with Catwoman director Pitof and discovered, among other things, that he didn't use the comics as research to develop "his" version of Catwoman. Also, he says he's PROUD of the Catwoman costume!

Why do so many directors feel the need to be so diameterically opposed to the fans, and "do their own thing" instead of keeping what works about a character that has already proven to be popular. Recent superhero movies have done a better job staying true to the character, but it seems the Hollywood types are slow to learn. Does anyone else have a sinking feeling about Catwoman? It's only gonna take one or two big flops to ruin this streak of well made, well backed comic book movies. Cross your fingers about Catwoman. Hopefully Halle's star power and sex appeal will save it, but it doesn't look good. Here's what he said:

Were you familiar with Catwoman comics or from director Tim Burton's "Batman Returns"?

Actually, both. When I was a kid, like most other kids my age, I was a big fan of superheroes like Superman and Batman, and Catwoman is part of that world. And of course I saw the first two Batman movies, and I was blown away by Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman. And when I saw "Batman Returns," I never thought that one day I would be directing my own Catwoman film! [Laughs]

Have you been reading a lot of old comics for research?

No, not really. I checked out some to see how Catwoman is treated in the comics, to make sure that our Catwoman was in the same vein. But I didn't want to be too influenced by the comic book, because the whole point of the movie is to be first a movie, and to be different. Different from "Batman," different from "Spider-Man" - this movie has its own identity. I tried to find my sources more in the character of Catwoman herself. To me, the Catwoman we're filming now with Halle Berry is in the continuity of the others. She's different than Michelle Pfeiffer's character, different from anybody who's played Catwoman in the past. But she is Catwoman. When you look at the differences between the comic book Catwoman and the TV or movie Catwoman, they're all different-but there's a feeling that they are all Catwoman. Halle brings her own personality, through her attitute and through the outfit.

You mentioned that this is in the same continuity as the other Catwomen. Does this mean that the film takes place in Gotham City? Will Batman make a cameo?

No, what I mean by continuity is the continuity of the character of Catwoman-who she is and how she acts. Her personality. But in terms of the world, no, it's a different world. There's no link with Gotham City. [The film's set in] a new city, and there's no link with any other superheroes. No Batman, no Superman-it's just Catwoman.

What do you think of the costume?

Oh, it's great! I'm really proud of the design of the costume. To me, it's in the same vein of the others. But it's unique to Halle. And it's very sexy. We tried to show a lot of skin, to make the suit as catlike as possible, and also to bring the dimension of a warrior-somebody who's ready for a fight.



The tone is not really dark. Of course, we'll have a lot of night shooting, because Catwoman is a night character. But we try to bring some humor in the situations. We have a nice romance between Catwoman and Tom Lone [played by Benjamin Bratt.]. So it will be action-packed and fun.

This is your first directing gig for an American film. Do you feel any pressure?

Pressure? What's pressure? [Laughs] Yeah, of course. I was lucky to have my first experience on "Alien: Resurrection." I was the visual effects supervisor and the second unit director as well. So I was ready, but I definitely felt the pressure, especially during the first week. But you have to live with that, because on any movie, the pressure is everywhere. You're like a lemon, and everybody wants to squeeze you.

Any pressure from having to meet the expectations of so many fans?

Of course. But the really tricky part about adapting a comic book movie is that it's not a comic book, it's a movie. My goal is not to try to work with the character. To keep the continuity of the Catwoman character herself-her behavior, who she is-more than the world.
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