Cats the movie is coming and there’s finally a first glimpse into the big-screen version of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s long-running musical based on T.S. Eliot’s poems. Cast members including Jennifer Hudson, Taylor Swift, Jason Derulo, Ian McKellen, James Corden, Rebel Wilson, and Idris Elba share their experiences with the musical and their enthusiasm about donning digital fur (an anticipated new technological marvel).
Tom Hooper, who directed the big-screen version of Les Misérables as well as The King’s Speech and The Danish Girl has taken up the challenge of helming the Cats movie.
“At the center of this incredibly entertaining, comedic, fantastical musical is a very timely story about inclusion and redemption,” Hooper says in the first-look video.
An Oscar winner for Dreamgirls, Hudson plays Grizabella, the aging cat who eventually ascends to the Heavyside Layer. And, of course, she gets to belt the mega-number “Memory.”
Elba plays Macavity the Mystery Cat, while Derulo channels the contrarian Rum Tum Tugger, and McKellen steps into Gus the Theatre Cat. Meanwhile, Dench plays the sage elder Old Deuteronomy, a role that has by and large been reserved for men.
Swift is playing Bombalurina, a cat who doesn’t have a song named after her, but she does sing plenty of numbers along with other characters. Wilson plays Jennyanydots, whose story is told in the song “The Old Gumbie Cat.”
While many of the stars of Cats aren’t known for their world-class dancing, Hooper has cast dozens of professional modern and ballet dancers including Francesca Haywood, who is the principal dancer at the Royal Ballet.
Get a first look at Cats below ahead of the trailer that drops this Friday.