Catwoman: Hunted's Stephanie Beatriz Compares Kate Kane to Rosa Diaz
Stephanie Beatriz (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Encanto) stars as Batwoman matching wits against Selina Kyle (Elizabeth Gillies) today in Catwoman: Hunted. Produced by Warner Bros. Animation, DC, and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, the feature-length, anime-style movie is now available on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray, and Digital. In the all-new original animated feature-length film, Catwoman's attempt to steal the priceless "Cat's Eye Emerald" puts her squarely in the crosshairs of both a powerful consortium of villains, the ever-resourceful Interpol and Batwoman. Inspired by Sailor Moon as a child, Beatriz has forged quite a name for herself in the voice acting world with roles such as Mirabel Madrigal in Disney's Encanto, Gina Cazador on BoJack Horseman, and Mira Popadopolous on Q Force. Recently the latest Disney princess sat down with Bleeding Cool to compare Rosa Diaz to Batwoman, discuss voicing an iconic LGBTQIA+ character, and share a few memories from the set of Brooklyn 99.
Let's talk about Kate Kane/ Batwoman in Catwoman: Hunted. To my ear, your performance is mostly a very serious tone similar to Rosa Diaz from Brooklyn 99. How would you say Batwoman and Rosa compare to each other?
Stephanie Beatriz: I think that Batwoman wants to remain more isolated, but she does have a sort of same, nonplused reactions to most people and most challenges having to have any kind of relationships. In this version, Catwoman: Hunted, audiences are sort of meeting her, meeting this version of her for the first time. They're meeting a character that hasn't had time, with them, to necessarily grow in a way that you got to see Rosa grow over eight seasons. I'd love to see what happens with the growth of Batwomen in this world. There are things that Batwoman doesn't necessarily have a total- she's got a lot of control around herself and her image and who she is, yet there are parts of herself that feel like she doesn't. She's not totally in control; she feels vulnerable there. She might have some sort of soft spots that she wasn't aware of. That's really exciting.
The only time that Batwoman's serious demeanor breaks is when Catwoman is let's say, distracting her. What can you tease the fans about the bubble bath scene?
SB: You're going to want to rewind it and watch it over and over. It's great. It's really sexy and tantalizing. It's fun to see two characters that you might not put in that situation be in that situation. I'm excited for people to see it and respond to it. I think it's really a fun scene. It's really fun. You've seen a version of that scene in lots of movies before, and watching these two characters play out, that scene is new and fresh and different. That's what's thrilling about it, too.
What would you say is the relationship between Batwoman and Catwoman?
SB: It's that sort of relationship that you've seen often in superhero worlds. It's that antagonistic, flirty, 'You annoy the crap out of me, and yet I think you're the smartest person in the room.' They challenge each other. I think they are an equal match in terms of ability and brains. It just expresses itself in different ways, and those ways make them butt heads, which is fun.
Batwoman is the highest-profile gay superhero, at least in the DC Universe. A few years ago, you came out as bi. How does it feel, or was it important to you to bring voice to an icon of the LGBTQ+ community?
SB: I think it's really amazing that the team behind Catwoman: Hunted wanted to have an actor that was part of the LGBTQIA community voice that character. So I'm really grateful that they asked me to be a part of the project. Good stories deserve to be told funny stories or because it just so happens that there are lots of people in the world, it just so happens that lots of kinds of people can fill up those good stories. And so I'm happy to be alive at a time when those characters are, in the central storylines of television and film, the media that we're consuming. At the same time, it's not over yet. There are parts of the world where those stories aren't celebrated; in fact, they're not even allowed to be. So we still have work to do as a global community to make sure that everyone sees themselves as the center of the story.
Are there any aspects of that woman that you see in yourself?
SB: Yeah, tough exterior trying to come off like she's got it all together. I think that that's definitely something I can identify with. I think a lot of people can identify with that. I'll say this, as a new mom, it can be really hard to ask for help. You want to believe that you've got it all together and you can do it all. You're going to be that one person that is able to juggle all the things that you need to juggle and constantly feeling like you're failing on one level or another. So that part is kind of coming at the world, with this front of I've got it all together. That is something that Batwoman and I have very much in common.
You might have been asked this more than once a couple of times in the past, but now it's my turn. Brooklyn 99 recently wrapped; I'd like to know what the mood was on the set on the last day of shooting.
SB: It was a mixture of really sad and really happy. Really sad because we knew we weren't going to be coming back to the set, working on the daily with each other, but really happy because we all really felt like we created something that was really loved and that we found really funny. We found it to be really satisfying and joyful. The work, with each other, was always really fun. We had an incredible crew with amazing writers. Our showrunner (Michael Schur) was a great person, Andy, the cast. It was a really magical time, and it taught me a lot about myself. It was a beautiful mix. I've had that feeling other times in my life. One of them was my wedding day, which was so beautiful and happy and joyous. Yet I knew that the day was going to come to an end and the party would be over. The same kind of feeling was enjoying every second, soaking it up while it was happening.
With so much comedy and funny stuff on the screen that we get to see as the audience, do you have any stories of high jinks behind the scenes, or who was the biggest jokester or a prankster on the set?
SB: We weren't really pranksters. It's strange because comedy takes a lot of brainpower, you know? We were lucky enough to work with one of the most brilliant, hilarious, and smartest people in the world, and that's Andy Samberg, who's really smart. For comedy to be smart, it's part of you, yet he does it so brilliantly and makes it look so easy. He's really smart. We weren't a real prankster kind of set. I think Chelsea Peretti is probably one of the funniest human beings on the planet. I am so lucky that I got to work with her for so long. I'm just in awe of how her brain works. I think she's an absolute genius. I guess one of the best memories I have is all of us sitting around at craft services or as we're shooting the pilot with a bunch of us sitting around and Andy kind of looked around at us and said, 'Well, get ready to look at each other's faces for the next seven years.' It was a total joke. We didn't know if the pilot was going to get picked up or not, you know? And then, eight seasons later, there we were. That's a really special memory that I have.
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