Catwoman, actress Anne Hathaway's character in the highly-anticipated "The Dark Knight Rises," is expected to play a major role in the upcoming movie.

Warner Bros. has just released a photo of Hathaway's character.  Before that, they released a picture of Bane, played by Tom Hardy, who will serve as the arch-villain of Batman in the movie.  Below are the photos of Bane and Catwoman.

"The Dark Knight Rises," directed by Christopher Nolan, will be based on the Batman comic books but not conform exactly to them.

Here are what the comic books have to say about the highly intriguing characters of Catwoman and Bane. 

Catwoman:

Catwoman, whose real name is Selena Kyle, comes from a troubled childhood. Her mother spent her time with cats and committed suicide when Kyle was young. Her alcoholic father eventually drank himself to death.

The orphaned Kyle turned to stealing and eventually to prostitution to survive. As an adult, Kyle began a successful career as a professional thief. 

Catwoman has a love-hate relationship with Batman. Although she frequently fought against him, both have showed each other mercy in numerous battles. The two have also been romantically linked at various times, although they never formed a long-term relationship.

(In an alternate comics universe, Kyle married Bruce Wayne and gave birth to a child named Helena Wayne).

A topic of speculation in "The Dark Knight Rises" is how far Batman/Bruce Wayne will take his romantic relationship with Catwoman/Selena Kyle.

Bane:

Bane was born in the fictional Island Santa Prisca, which is ruled by a corrupt government. When his father escaped from his prison sentence, the government made the young Bane serve in his place.

It was in this gritty environment that Bane honed his fighting skills, cunning, and toughness. He also put himself under the tutelage of a Jesuit priest and read books to further his knowledge.

Bane's hardiness was noticed by prison administrators, who then injected him with an experimental drug called Venom that had killed all previous test subjects. Bane survived Venom and the drug gave him superhuman strength.

He subsequently escaped from prison and eventually set his sights on Batman, who he saw as a worthy adversary to conquer.  In their first meeting, Bane overpowered an exhausted Batman (from circumstances he created) and broke Batman's back, leaving him a paraplegic.

A topic of intense speculation is whether or not Bane will break Batman in "The Dark Knight Rises."