Exploring the Lost Catwoman Spin-Off from Batman Returns: Burton’s Vision Unveiled

Exploring the Lost Catwoman Spin-Off from Batman Returns: Burton’s Vision Unveiled

In the dynamic realm of superhero cinema, the narrative surrounding Tim Burton’s abandoned Catwoman spin-off from Batman Returns remains a captivating mystery. Daniel Waters, the writer behind Batman Returns, recently shed light on the untold project, providing insights into the divergent visions of Burton and himself.

The Burgeoning Ideas

As Batman Returns concluded, the tantalizing hint of Catwoman’s survival sparked Warner Bros’ interest in a standalone venture. Daniel Waters revealed that both Burton and himself had distinct visions for the proposed spin-off.

Tim Burton’s Vision

Burton’s artistic vision envisioned an $18 million black and white film inspired by the original Cat People. This cinematic approach would have portrayed Selina Kyle in a lowkey life within a small town, deviating from the grandiosity of Gotham City.

Daniel Waters’ Vision

Waters, on the other hand, envisioned a unique Batman movie with a metaphor centered around the Dark Knight. His script imagined Catwoman relocating to a Los Angeles version of Gotham City, ruled by three unsavory superheroes—an early glimpse of what would later become popularized in “The Boys.” However, Burton found Waters’ script exhaustive.

The Unseen Narrative

While the Catwoman spin-off eluded realization, Halle Berry eventually brought the character to life in a movie. However, this iteration diverged significantly from the Batman universe, featuring a plot where Patience Phillips gained powers from an Egyptian cat god to combat a cosmetics company boss. Despite its uniqueness, the film earned notoriety, securing four Razzies.

Changing Perspectives

Waters also reflected on the evolving reception of Batman Returns among comic fans. Initially criticized for deviating from the traditional Batman narrative, the film’s unconventional approach is now viewed with interest in a cinematic landscape saturated with numerous Batman movies.


Tim Burton’s unrealized Catwoman spin-off serves as a testament to the creative complexities within the superhero film industry. The contrasting visions of Burton and Waters, though unrealized, offer a glimpse into the imaginative possibilities that could have enriched the Batman cinematic universe. As fans continue to explore the expansive world of superheroes, these untold stories and abandoned projects serve as intriguing what-ifs, sparking discussions on the road not taken.


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