Just a few weeks before Zoe Kravitz’s portrayal of the character appears in filmmaker Matt Reeves’ “The Batman,” the animated film “Catwoman: Hunted” will concentrate on DC’s most renowned burglar. Catwoman, played by Elizabeth Gillies of “Dynasty,” will be trapped between Interpol, a gang of legendary DC criminals, and at least one member of the Bat family following an attempted theft in the upcoming film.
The film is a stylistic departure for DC, since it utilises a whole new animation method. Shinsuke Terasawa directed it, and he previously worked in the animation department of Japanese anime programs such as “Arc the Lad,” “The Tower of DRUAGA: The Aegis of URUK,” and, most notably, numerous “Lupin the Third” features. The teaser for “Catwoman: The Hunted” highlights this anime-like style, as well as energetic music that looks to be influenced by Steven Soderbergh’s “Oceans” films.
DC officially confirmed the release date for “Catwoman: Hunted” at their DC Fandome event after months of labelling the film with only a vague “early 2022” date. The next animated feature is set to be released on February 8, 2022.
It will be the first of many DC animated projects in what appears to be a busy year. A few months after the Catwoman animated film debuts, in the spring of 2022, the animated crossover “Teen Titans Go & DC Super Hero Girls: Mayhem in the Multiverse” will be released, in which characters from the two Cartoon Network programs link up for a hilarious adventure. Soon later, in the summer of 2022, a new Green Lantern film, “Green Lantern: Beware My Power,” will be released.
Character and plot details for the latter feature have yet to be disclosed, although it is expected that it will not follow the same premise as “Beware My Power,” the extra-long premiere episode of 2011’s “Green Lantern: The Animated Series.” “Battle of the Super Sons,” the first all CGI DC Animated feature, will be released this autumn, as will an R-rated, 4K omnibus edition of the two-part “Batman: The Long Halloween” film series. But, first and foremost, “Catwoman: Hunted” will be released, presumably to pique fans’ interest in the live-action Zoe Kravitz version.
On Team Villain, the “legendary” bad guys she’ll face include Black Mask (Jonathan Banks), Barbara Minerva aka Cheetah (Kirby Howell-Baptiste), Talia al Ghul and Nosferata (both Zehra Fazal), Tobias Whale (Keith David), Cheshire (Kelly Hu), Solomon Grundy (Steve Blum), Boss Moxie (Jonathan Fra (Andrew Kishino).
For those keeping score at home, it appears to be more than ten possible opponents, so make your bets on who could be working harder than the rest during the film. Batwoman, played by “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” star Stephanie Beatriz, is on Team Good Guy. Julia Pennyworth (Lauren Cohan), a Bat Family supporter extraordinaire, and spymaster King Faraday (Frakes again) will also appear.
“Catwoman: Hunted” follows DC’s part-time hero, part-time villain as she tries to rob a precious diamond. However, either this effort or some of her prior crimes appear to have caught up with her, and she’s been given the chance to have her warrants expunged if she assists the government and Batwoman in bringing down the Leviathan Crime Syndicate.
According to the video, Catwoman will have to stop “ten famous criminals,” presumably members of the syndicate. There will be jet-setting, sword-fighting, and acrobatic dodging of security lasers.
One intriguing point for comics fans: a statement in the video appears to allude to Leviathan as Minerva’s organisation – as in Barbara Minerva, the alter-ego of DC’s Cheetah – yet Leviathan has always been Talia Al Ghul’s initiative. Given the presence of both individuals in the film, this is either a change or Leviathan has a convoluted organization’s structure someplace back at headquarters. Given the number of crime kingpins and queenpins on the cast list, the latter is a distinct possibility.