Hey, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab.
BOSSHOG's the man with his finger on the pulse of everything going on here in town. He contributes to this site a lot more than you realize. He's a great deep cover source, and today he's surfaced (just a bit) to share his impressions with you about Warner Bros' CATWOMAN project. Ashley Judd's still attached, and sounds like she'd be purrrrfect for it. This is the first review I know of for the latest draft of the thing, but be warned... there are some major spoilers here. Check it out...
I've just finished reading the Warner Bros.' script for CATWOMAN, and I thought I'd just post a summary and review. i don't know if anyone ver reviewed it but here you go:
Catwoman begins in the small town of Bristol with a 9-year-old girl, Patience and her mother Constance. Patience is playing with her kitten. Constance is an inventor who has invented an ionic chip that will make dishwashers more efficient. She is just about to go to her boss, Simon Greenaway Jr., and demand a portion of the profits from her invention.
Hours later, mysteriously, a police officer shows up to the little girl’s house saying that Constance had committed suicide. Devastated, the girl and her pet are sent to live with her aunt. A dirty evil stepmother type character that, of course, has tons of cats. When this disgusting aunt punishes Patience by locking her in the basement, it is the plethora of cats that comfort her. It is also made clear at this time that a current newspaper headline on reads : Gotham City’s Catwoman Confirmed Dead.
Jump forward 12 years, and Patience owns a small pet grooming store in the same small town that she runs with her best friend Sally. Difference is that the small town has been totally modernized and stripped of all its character by Simon Greenaway Jr.
Greenaway, a suffering germiphobe, has bought up much of the town and is modernizing and comforming everything to make the "perfect society." He, and his assistant/girlfriend Lily, are the villains of the story. It is made clear that Patience knows Greenaway stole the designs for the ionic dishwasher chip and made billions off of it, and she is vocal in her resentment. A reporter in her martial arts class, Gigi, gives her some information that leads her to Simon Greenaway’s office building in search of more answers. Patience is able to locate a file with her deceased mother’s name on it. As she starts to open the file, she is caught by a security guard and escorted out.
Later, at a town Halloween celebration thrown by Simon Greenaway, Patience encounters Detective Bill Lone, the male lead in the film. She gets flustered because she has a crush on him and only says a few words. She is, of course, wearing a cat Halloween costume picked out by her best friend.
Back at her apartment, a group of Greenaway’s thugs, prompted by their bosses viewing of the security camera tape, grab Patience and toss her off the roof in an attempt to kill her. Her pet cat, Spooky, as well as tons of other cats surround her in a familiar scene and "breathe life, as well as the spirit of Catwoman into her limp body. From there on she has cat-like senses and agility. She goes through the costume-making scenario with the latex, leather boots, and pet’s collars strung into a whip.
As Catwoman, Patience steals jewelry from many rich guests at a party and pawns the stolen goods. She gives the money to Ray, an old friend of her mother’s who helped look out for her as a child, and who was forced out of his job at the zoo, as well as his house by Greenaway buying the property and closing the zoo. This sets Catwoman up as a kind of Robin Hood. She also vandalizes the "perfect city" and leaves spraypaint calling for non-conformity in many different ways.
After several high action police chases and heists, Catwoman eventually comes face to face with Detective Lone, and there is a sexual attraction. This is starting to sound a bit familiar, but I will get to that later.
Catwoman breaks into the Greenaway offices again, this time avoiding the security cameras, but finds the file on her mother missing. She goes to Simon Greenaway’s office and in his safe, finds the file proving her mother’s invention as well as several vials of an undetermined liquid.
Patience meets with the Detective and gives him some information. Apparently the liquid in the vials is a chemical that, in lab tests, made rats sterile. She deduces that Greenaway intends to put this in the water supply of Bristol (he owns the Water tower). Eventually, Sally, the best friend realizes Patience is Catwoman and swipes the suit in order to use it to steal jewelry, and get some excitement in her life. There is a long action sequence when Patience must save her friend and confront the Detective that she has a crush on.
Through several events the cops realize, thanks to Patience, that Simon Greenaway is out to "cleanse" the city’s society and has committed several serious crimes in the process. At the same time Greenaway has put Ray, and his family in the empty Zoo and plans to leave them their when the bombs go off to level the property. Catwoman must defuse the bomb and save the day as well as catch the bad guy.
When the Detective catches up with Simon fighting with Catwoman, he overhears Simon confess to her of how he killed her mother and stole the plans for the ionic chip, as well as killed several other people. Simon is able to flee the cops, as is Catwoman. Catwoman talks Lily, Simon Greenaway’s girlfriend, into a change of heart, and she is the one that ends up killing her former boyfriend/boss by drowning him in the water tower.
Catwoman plunges, seemingly to her death, but Patience returns to the pet-grooming place to have her romance with the Detective. Happy ending as usual.
Ok, let me start by saying that this script has a lot of potential. It also has some problems that any development exec should be able to iron out.
The first act is very good. All of the character establishment, as well as the events leading up to Patience becoming Catwoman are extremely entertaining and well written. Most of the problems arise in the dialogue that is spoken while Patience is in the Catwoman Costume. That isn’t to say there is not a lot of witty, very comic book-like jokes (i.e. "Pussy" jokes). The major problems are the similarities to Batman Returns. The relationship Patience and Detective Lone have is almost identical to the Michelle Pfeiffer/Michael Keaton exchanges in the film. Right down to the way they playfully talk to each other during every fight scene, and the slip of the tongue that reveals to him who Catwoman really is.
I guess if you can believe that a group of cats revived one woman who had fallen off a building and turned her into a cat-like superhero, it could happen again. There needs to be some changes made to get away from the similar occurrences this script share with the second Batman film.
On the other hand, there is also a lot of good in this script. One of the main themes is something that every pretty girl I know complains to me about. There is a lot of discussion of the pressure put on women today by the media in reference to the way they look. There is even a funny scene in which Catwoman, fleeing the police through an air duct, spots a young girl in the dressing room of a department store complaining about how round her ass is. Catwoman drops into the dressing room and gives her a lecture about it:
"One, your ass does look round. It's supposed to look round. If it didn't you would be a prepubescent boy. Two, in ancient Egypt, the Goddess of Fecundity had a nice big ass and she was worshipped. and Three, to quote the 1992 rap classic, 'Baby Got Back': 'My Anaconda don’t want none unless you got buns hon...."
Funny indeed... Basically the idea that women can be beautiful even if they don’t look like the models in magazines is a common thread in this script, and I believe this is an important point that is not usually emphasized in big budget Hollywood pictures. Also here is the idea to not let boyfriends ruin your life by constantly telling women that they are fat when they are really pretty as they are.
All in all, not an extraordinary script, but one with a lot of promise. If this is done correctly, it could be a cool comic book type film geared at an adult audience, with an important lesson to be learned about society.