The upcoming CBS series Supergirl has added Calista Flockhart to the cast.
The star of Ally McBeal and Brothers & Sisters will play Cat Grant, Kara’s boss and self-styled media magnate who started her career as a reporter and founded CatCo, a global media powerhouse. Flockhart reunites with producer Greg Berlanti, who also produced Brothers & Sisters.
This Cat Grant differs slightly from the one frequently seen in the pages of DC Comics. Usually, Cat is either a society columnist for the Daily Planet or a gossip reporter on WGBS. Introduced in Adventures of Superman #424 (January 1987), she was added to the cast as a possible romantic interest for Clark Kent.
Eventually, Cat became involved with Jose Delgado (Gangbuster) after her undercover work at Galaxy Broadcasting exposed Morgan Edge’s involvement with Intergang. Subsequent events lead to Cat’s taking over as president of Galaxy until the death of her son, after which she eventually goes back to Los Angeles.
In 2008, new Supergirl writer Sterling Gates worked to integrate Supergirl’s story continuity with that of the Superman titles, and the supporting cast began to cross over as well. Cat had returned to Metropolis, more flirty and fitting the “cougar” label much more than before, and she became an active critic of Supergirl in the pages of the Daily Planet. It’s possible this may have an influence on the new series, as Kara takes a job as Cat’s assistant in both versions.
Cat Grant has appeared in live action series before, most notably in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, played by Tracy Scoggins. Two different characters named Cat Grant also appeared in Smallville, but neither one bore any resemblance to the character from the comics.
Flockhart has passed on several projects after Brothers & Sisters ended in 2001. Berlanti’s involvement is credited as a reason for her return to television.