CATWOMAN: HUNTED Writer Greg Weisman On Showing New Sides Of Selina Kyle And His Love Of DC (Exclusive)

Catwoman: Hunted writer Greg Weisman (Spectacular Spider-Man) talks about penning the movie's script, getting to play with some iconic villains, exploring what makes Selina Kyle tick, and his love of DC.

In the all-new original Catwoman: Hunted, Selina Kyle's attempt to steal a priceless jewel puts her squarely in the crosshairs of both a powerful consortium of villains and the ever-resourceful Interpol, not to mention Batwoman. It might just be enough to contain her. Or not. The latest movie from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment is an absolute riot, and a great start to 2022 for DC Animation.

Greg Weisman penned the movie's screenplay, and given his veteran status in the world of animation, we're sure that will make this movie a must-see for many of you. He counts Gargoyles, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Star Wars Rebels, and Young Justice among his credits, and the fact he's such a big fan of the DC Universe arguably made him the perfect choice to tell this story featuring Selina Kyle.

In this interview, Greg talks to us about his approach to this story, getting to work with a lot of different villains, the unique Catwoman/Batwoman dynamic, and Selina Kyle's approach to being a hero. He also reveals some of his main inspirations when it came to bringing Catwoman to life on screen.

His comments are insightful and fascinating, and really drive home why he's one of the best in the business. His love for this character and DC are clear to see, so read our full conversation below! 

Catwoman: Hunted is set for release on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray and Digital on February 8, 2022.
 

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When you signed on to write Catwoman: Hunted, did you know it would feature this anime-style animation and, if so, did that affect your approach to telling the story in any way? 

Yeah, I did know. I pitched it that way. It did in the sense that, in my head, I had Lupin the Third running around. So much so, that I intentionally didn’t watch it again. I’d watched it years before, and I was afraid that if I watched it again, it would be too big an influence. I wouldn’t just be homaging it, I’d be ripping it off [Laughs]. I intentionally didn’t watch it again, but that was definitely in my head. I knew we were going to do something with car chases, scaling buildings, and big adventure. That idea excited me a lot. 

You get to explore some different sides to Selina Kyle here, including some romantic tension with Batwoman; where did the idea for that come from and what surprised you most as a writer when you started to dive into their dynamic? It’s not something we’ve necessarily seen in the comics before.

The idea to use Batwoman actually came from DC. They suggested it and I thought it was brilliant. The moment they said that, I responded, ‘Oh, yeah, that would be great!’ We didn’t want to include Batman on purpose. He’s sort of in the back of everyone’s mind throughout the movie, but he’s not an actual presence there. The idea of teaming her up with Batwoman and the differences in their attitudes fascinated me. I don’t think there is a lot of romantic tension between them as a potential couple, though. I’m not saying some fans might not ship them; I would totally get that. I think the idea is that seduction is one of the many tools in Selina’s tool chest and she uses it on Black Mask and would use it on a hero or a villain.

She uses it very briefly on Batwoman as well and is so good at it that there’s this brief moment for Kate where she thinks, ‘Well, maybe,’ but then the moment very quickly passes [Laughs]. I don’t think this is a potential couple in any way, but I do think that for a moment, Kate goes, ‘What would be the harm?’ and then immediately realises, ‘Oh my God, the harm would be huge!’ [Laughs] What’s great about their report and repertoire is they find a meeting ground in the middle, but they come out from two entirely different places and mindsets and yet, without giving too much away, you see by the end of the movie they weren’t that far apart. It’s just a stylistic thing more than anything. 

I won’t spoil anything, but there are some great Easter Eggs in the film, so how challenging is it in a film like this with a lot of characters to balance those with the main story and not head too much into that fan-service territory?

The history of my career is way too many characters [Laughs]. In every single show I’ve done, whether it’s Young Justice, Gargoyles, or Spectacular Spider-Man, they’ve always had ridiculously immense casts and that’s fun for me to juggle. We just wanted to keep the threat level and action moving on this, so we brought in a bunch of different characters. Some I’d used before, and many I’d never used before. It was about trying to keep it balanced and a romp, but with serious undertones.

You mentioned Spectacular Spider-Man, and I know you’ve said quite definitively that the show won’t be back, but what does it mean to you when you see the show trending on Twitter as recently as last month with fans sharing their love for the show and hopes for a revival?

Well, it’s very gratifying that the fans love it. We’re getting off-topic here, but it’s not that I wouldn’t want to do it again. Just to clarify, I would love to do it again. I just don’t understand any path to that. I don’t see it. I’d love to be wrong, but I just don’t see it. We loved working on that show. We had a blast, but that’s not what we’re here to talk about [Laughs]. 
 

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There are lots of great villains in this film, and they’re not necessarily your Jokers and Two-Faces but bad guys like Black Mask and [SPOILER]; what did you enjoy most about getting to write for them? 

The idea was to make this feel very international, so it was about bringing in crime bosses not just from Gotham. I was very interested in doing cat villains for obvious reasons, so you’ve got Cheshire in there and Barbara Minerva. I was interested in throwing in, not a Batman villain, but a Bat-villain, so you wind up with Nosferatura in there. I just wanted a wild card or two that you wouldn’t expect. [SPOILER] is a character I have tremendous affection for, but there’s a version of him I always wanted to do that we got to do here that I enjoyed. He becomes more of a force of nature than anything. That even allowed us to pull in a little Looney Tunes there, and that’s fun for me. 

You’ve worked on so many iconic franchises from Spider-Man to Star Wars, but what is it about the DC Universe that appeals to you most as a writer?

Well, it goes back to being a kid. I loved comic books and superheroes as a kid, and DC was 50%. Then, I went to work for DC in the 80s on staff and it was my first real job out of college if you don’t count working in a bookstore a few hours a day. These characters mean a lot to me, so doing a show like Young Justice or a movie like Catwoman: Hunted is like a dream come true to my childhood self.

Catwoman, by her nature, can be quite a duplicitous character, but what do you enjoy most about exploring someone like Selina who operates less in black and white and more in those shades of grey?

She’s so much fun to write for just that reason. Everything is complex motivations, but on the surface, there’s this style and sense of humour that is a mask. It’s a mask that very rarely comes down, so we tried to show in the film a couple of moments here and there where the mask briefly comes down and you see the serious intent underneath with her. Then, she very quickly brings that mask back up but that mask is so much fun. That persona she’s created for himself is very real to her, and thus hopefully very real to us as the viewer. It’s a great kick to write certainly and I hope for everyone to watch.

This Catwoman does feel like a very original version of the character, but were there any specific comic books or past performances that you had in mind while writing her?

I mean, I’ve been reading Catwoman comics since the early 70s. Long before she was ever an anti-hero and just a Batman villain. The Batman TV show too. All that stuff blends in my head, and then what I try to do with Catwoman or any character from DC or anywhere, quite frankly, is just get down what the essential elements of this character are and what the archetypal Catwoman is. I then try to bring that out. It’s not about jettisoning other factors, but more about finding what’s core to her and letting that shine through.

There was some stuff Tom King did just before Selina and Bruce didn’t get married that was in my head probably, but just in terms of the time I was pitching the movie. Fundamentally, it goes way back before then to the Batman TV show, the old comics, and back to the days where Selina and Bruce were pre-Crisis and openly boyfriend and girlfriend for a while. All those comics that had Selina in them…there are some great Alan Brennert stories of the Earth-2 Catwoman and Batman and how they got together that’s always been big to me, and an issue of Brave and the Bold (I think it’s #197 or something like that). That was always a big story for me. 

ALSO READ: Star Elizabeth Gillies Talks Romantic Tension With Batwoman And Live-Action Hopes
ALSO READ: Producer Ethan Spaulding Talks Selina Kyle's First Feature And Anime Influence
 

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CATWOMAN: HUNTED Writer Greg Weisman On Showing New Sides Of Selina Kyle And His Love Of DC (Exclusive)
Catwoman: Hunted writer Greg Weisman (Spectacular Spider-Man) talks about penning the movie's script, getting to play with some iconic villains, exploring what makes Selina Kyle tick, and his love of DC.

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