“The Bat, the Cat, the Penguin”
Batman Returns is an American superhero film, directed by Tim Burton, based on the DC Comics character Batman. It is the second installment of Warner Bros.‘ initial Batman film series, with Michael Keaton reprising the title role of Bruce Wayne/Batman. The film, produced by Denise Di Novi and Burton, introduces the characters of Max Shreck (Christopher Walken), a corrupt business tycoon who teams up with the Penguin (Danny DeVito) to take over Gotham City, as well as the character of Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer).
Burton originally did not want to direct another Batman film. Warner Bros. developed a script with writer Sam Hamm which had the Penguin and Catwoman going after hidden treasure. Burton agreed to return after they granted him more creative control and replaced Hamm with Daniel Waters. Wesley Strick did an uncredited rewrite, removing the characters of Harvey Dent and Robin and rewriting the climax. Annette Bening was originally cast as Catwoman but became pregnant and was replaced with Pfeiffer.
Batman Returns was released on June 19, 1992. The film was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Visual Effects and Best Makeup, as well as two BAFTA awards. Batman Returns’s budget was $80 million and it grossed $266.8 million worldwide, making the film a financial success. The film received generally positive reviews from critics praising the action sequences, the acting, Danny Elfman’s score, effects and the film’s villains, though the overwhelmingly dark and depressing tone was less well received. [Wikipedia]
Having defeated the Joker, Batman now faces the Penguin – a warped and deformed individual who is intent on being accepted into Gotham society. Crooked businessman Max Schreck is coerced into helping him become Mayor of Gotham and they both attempt to expose Batman in a different light. Earlier however, Selina Kyle, Max’s secretary, is thrown from the top of a building and is transformed into Catwoman – a mysterious figure who has the same personality disorder as Batman. Batman must attempt to clear his name, all the time deciding just what must be done with the Catwoman. [IMDb]