The press release is only a few hours old, but already Batman fans are divided over Anne Hathaway getting cast as Selina "Catwoman" Kyle in The Dark Knight Rises. (Note: Although the release only says "Selina Kyle," I'm gonna go out on a limb and assume that she will, at some point, put on a black jumpsuit and rob an apartment.) Tom Hardy is getting less flack for playing the normally Hispanic criminal Bane -- Hardy's muscles in Bronson and Bane's awful part in Batman & Robin help a lot -- but Hathaway is getting hit on all sides from people criticizing her looks, her acting ability and her personality, saying she's all wrong for the sultry cat burglar. While many are equally quick to defend her, I thought I'd throw in my two cents as to why she's perfect for the role. And no, I don't mean "purrr-fect." I'm not Eartha Kitt.
1. She's Not a Princess Anymore... But She Might Need to Be
People call her "the Princess Diaries star," or even mention Ella Enchanted, but those were ages ago. Sure, she was the White Queen in Alice in Wonderland just last year, but she's played a lot of grounded, flawed characters in between. So whether they go old-school and make her a socialite or go with the Frank Miller origin where she's a prostitute, either is well within the grasp of the Oscar-nominated actress. (She was nominated for playing a selfish drug addict, by the way.)
2. She's Certainly Not Plain
If a Google Image search still doesn't convince you that Hathaway is beautiful, then you've clearly got a very narrow definition. Her big eyes and a Cheshire Cat grin are striking, and keep in mind that her usual costume (and yes, I think she will most assuredly wear one) covers the rest of her face, making those arguably her most important assets.
3. They're Called Trainers
Criticisms of Hathaway's body type, that she's too skinny, are ridiculous -- she's going to have to get into shape for the role, both for her stunts (and yeah, I think there will be stunts) and to squeeze into her trademark catsuit. Plus, another Google Image search will show you that Hathaway has ample decolletage, and Catwoman definitely has been known to show off the goods.
4. She's Got a Different Fan Base
With people already saying that Chris Nolan's third Batman film will be the worst, it's gonna take some magic to get the box office receipts up past The Dark Knight's numbers. I personally think Nolan is a casting genius, choosing actresses with strong female fan bases (Hathaway, Katie Holmes) or indie cred (Ellen Page, Maggie Gyllenhaal) to balance out his blockbuster casts. Sure, he could have gone with guy candy like Megan Fox or Olivia Wilde, but with Hathaway, he can get the guys to bring their dates.
5. In Nolan We Trust
If Inception and its intricate diagrams proved anything, it's that Nolan plans out his movies in great detail, and he knows what he's going to need to make them work. He knew Heath Ledger was the Joker, even if we didn't, and he clearly knows that Hathaway is Selina Kyle. Rather than writing off the third movie and its casting right away, we should be excited just thinking about how Nolan is going to surprise us next.
...Well, that came off much more "rah-rah" than I intended. Thoughts on the casting? Leave 'em below.
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