by Elizabeth Stammitti
Anne Hathaway was the chosen actress to play the coveted role of the skillful and seductive cat-burglar in the last installment of the Christopher Nolan’s Batman series, The Dark Knight Rises. The character is one of the most complex in Batman’s history, not being really a villain, neither a hero, more like an anti-hero, which will probably serve to give the character a more realistic and dramatic approach for Hathaway to sink her teeth into. Since Nolan is not only an outstanding director, but also a brilliant writer, it will be interesting to see how he and the rest of the writers will portray this character on the big screen, what parts of her background story will they choose to include and how will her relationship with Batman be, since they seem like two sides of the same coin, and she is actually the only love interest in Bruce Wayne’s life that comes close to being an enduring romance.
Anne Hathaway made a name for herself with her first movie, The Princess Diaries, where she gave an average performance as a goofy young girl who is transformed into an elegant, sophisticated Princess. Actually, that’s the word that comes to mind when I think of her, average, not great, not bad, certainly likeable, and most of her roles after that have shown that same level of quality (acting-wise), though she did manage to get an Oscar nomination for her work in Rachel Getting Married, which, for those who have confidence in the Oscar’s decisions, could signify she has it in her to achieve some sort of greatness within her craft. For those who get angry year after year watching the nominations, the winners and the losers, there is simply a name to have in mind, and that is, Christopher Nolan, who could probably obtain a magnificent performance out of a sculpture, so young Hathaway has a chance to shine here.
It’s similar to what happened with Heath Ledger. When it was announced that he was cast as The Joker, most of the fans sighed in disbelief, especially when the previous incarnation of the character on the big screen was made by one of the greatest actors still alive, Jack Nicholson. But our expectations were greatly surpassed;Heath Ledger gave one of the most memorable performances ever on screen, stealing the spotlight in The Dark Knight. Now, I don’t think Hathaway will reach such a peak, but she might be another highlight in the whole franchise.
So, even if Hathaway’s acting has been average, Catwoman represents the biggest opportunity for her to get out of her comfort zone and dig into meatier roles, since I know the writers will do a fantastic job giving this character depth and making it three dimensional, allowing Hathaway to showcase her ability as an actress. I think she’s capable of pulling off the job, particularly on the hands of Christopher Nolan. It is not uncommon that some directors get bad performances from good actors and, being this sort of the opposite case, I believe this collaboration will be worth watching.