Entertainment Weekly | #354 November 22, 1996
When Batman met Catwoman
By Benjamin Svetkey | Photograph by Firooz Zahedi
LIFE REALLY DOES imitate art—sort of. In One Fine Day, opening Dec. 20, Michelle Pfeiffer plays an almost-having-it-all divorced mom who accidentally swaps Motorolas with single-dad newspaper reporter George Clooney. After much cellular chitchat, they fall in love, natch. In reality, Pfeiffer is a having-it-all married mom who recently spent a morning on the phone with a magazine reporter. After much chitchat, she didn’t fall in love. Bummer. But the 39-year-old actress did give great dish on her latest flick, on working with the new Bat on the block, and on this year’s holiday movies—until her kids made her hang up. Here’s snippet. Feel free to eavesdrop…
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So, Where are you? On a cellular phone, like in the movie?
MICHELLE PFEIFFER: No, I’m in my kitchen. I don’t have a cell phone. I’m afraid of brain cancer. Also, with all the scanning, I try to avoid them.
EW: Do your kids [Claudia, 3, and John, 2] get jealous seeing you play a mom on screen?
MP: I don’t let them see me on screen. I think it messes with their psyches. They don’t even like it when they show up at work and I have a wig on. It confuses them. They’re heavily in the process of figuring out fantasy and reality. Claudia saw that Dangerous Minds video I did with Coolio. The end image is me disappearing. I sort of fade out. She burst into tears. She couldn’t understand, even though I was right next to her. She saw me disappear, and that was reality for her.
EW: As a former Catwoman, did you give Clooney any advice about playing Batman?
MP: I said make sure they give you a trapdoor in your Batsuit. They get you in this contraption, and in order to go to the bathroom you have to completely disrobe, and it takes an hour to get it back on.
EW: Are you supporting Clooney in his anti-stalkerazzi campaign? [Clooney is boycotting Paramount’s Entertainment Tonight because the studio also produces tabloidy Hard Copy.]
MP: I haven’t had as many problems with it as George. I haven’t had too many problems with Hard Copy. The more hideous things have happened on other shows. American Journal has been worse. Frankly, my life is not all that interesting: I’m married [to TV writer-producer David E. Kelley]; I’ve got kids. When you’re single, they find your life much more interesting, much more titillating. But in principle I’m totally behind George. It’s high time people started defending their rights. As celebrities, our rights to privacy have been completely stripped away.
EW: Here’s a stalkerazzi-type question—Robert Redford, your coaster in this year’s Up Close & Personal, claims that Michelle Pfeiffer isn’t your real name. so what is your real name?
MP: You know, that’s just Bob stirring things up. It’s my real name; it’s my real nose; it’s my real everything. Although my first agents did try to convince me to change my last name. they thought it would be too hard for people to spell. I said, “Get over it.”
EW: Another rumor: Aaron Spelling says he discovered you while you were working as a checkout clerk in a supermarket. True of false?
MP: You know what? That sounds really good, but it’s just not accurate. The first TV series I did was called Delta House, an Animal House sort of thing. And when I got the part I was working in supermarket. But it’s not like anyone came into my checkout line and discovered me and put me on TV. In fact, I didn’t do a Spelling show [1980’s B.A.D. Cats] until later. By that time I was long gone from the supermarket.
EW: Okay, here’s a nicer question. Seen any good movies lately?
MP: Hold on a second. (Mommy’s almost done on the phone. Get your shoes on and then I’ll be ready, all right?) Okay, I’m back. Have I seen anything good lately? I lasted about 10 minutes into Ransom. The kidnapping of the child was too much for me.
EW: What about the holiday flicks?
MP: I’m really curious to see The Crucible, and the one with Ralph Fiennes, The English Patient. And I’m dying to see the new Nicole Kidman movie, The Portrait of a Lady. Hold on another second. (Mommy will be right there, all right? Put your shoes on.) Listen, I gotta get going. Sorry. What can I say? A woman’s work is never done.