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Dee

Cats (2019)

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The musical tells the story of a tribe of cats called the Jellicles and the night they make what is known as "the Jellicle choice" and decide which cat will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new life.

Director: Tobe Hooper

Executive Producer: Steven Spielberg

Cast: Ian McKellen, Jennifer Hudson, James Corden, Mette Towley, Idris Elba, Laurie Davidson, Taylor Swift, Judi Dench

Edited by Dee

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‘Cats’ Cast: Royal Ballet Principal Dancer Steven McRae To Play Skimbleshanks

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In the Andrew Lloyd Webber stage musical, Skimbleshanks is an older ginger tabby cat who considers himself very important within the tribe. His main role is to work on the mail trains traveling at nighttime, which he considers a vital contribution to the Jellicles and sings about in the song “Skimbleshanks the Railway Cat”.

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Hi Dee,

I think you mean Tom Hooper and not Tobe Hooper as director.  Tobe Hooper is one of favorites but he died (and I could never imagine Cats in is wheelhouse) ;) 

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4 hours ago, Penguins71 said:

Hi Dee,

I think you mean Tom Hooper and not Tobe Hooper as director.  Tobe Hooper is one of favorites but he died (and I could never imagine Cats in is wheelhouse) ;) 

Tom Hooper means there will be all sorts of strange angles, jerky editing, and close ups.  That was fine for a hyper "real" production like John Adams or Les Miserables, but I'm not sure if that works here.

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14 hours ago, Brn2bwild said:

Tom Hooper means there will be all sorts of strange angles, jerky editing, and close ups.  That was fine for a hyper "real" production like John Adams or Les Miserables, but I'm not sure if that works here.

As long as he shows better judgment than asking Russel Crowe to sing

Edited by Which Tyler
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Rebel Wilson To Play Jennyanydots In Universal-Working Title’s ‘Cats’

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Wilson will portray the old Gumbie cat Jennyanydots, who has a reputation for being lazy. In Cats lore she’s known to spend her days seeking out the warm and sunny spots where she sits, and sits, and sits, and sleeps as the hours tick by. But when the moon rises, she’s alive and bakes and fries, and teaches the mice “knitting, crocheting and tatting.” On top of that, she employs the cockroaches to be her troop of helpful boy scouts.

Robbie Fairchild to Play Munkustrap in ‘Cats’ Movie Adaptation

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Robbie Fairchild has joined the cast of Universal Pictures and Working Title’s film adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical “Cats,” in which he will play the character Munkustrap.

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Universal-Working Title’s Feature Adaptation Of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘Cats’ Rolls Cameras

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Many have wondered how Cats will appear on screen, and the Tom Hooper-directed production is using a new technology to transform cast members into a vivid new vision of their characters.

Hooper adapted with Lee Hall (Billy Elliot), and is producing with Working Title’s Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, as well as Debra Hayward, who brought the idea to Working Title.  Monumental Pictures and The Really Useful Group are also producing with Steven Spielberg, Lloyd Webber and Angela Morrison (Les Misérables) and Jo Burn (Annihilation) serving as EPs.

Prior to the first day of shooting, the cast have been rehearsing at Leavesden Studios in Hertfordshire, UK. Overseeing the dancing in Cats is three-time Tony-winning choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler (Hamilton: An American Musical, In the Heights, Bandstand), who also choreographed the 2016 stage revival of Cats. The pic’s cast features hip hop dance sensation Larry and Laurent Bourgeiois (aka Les Twins); former principal dancer for the New York City Ballet and Tony-nominated actor Robbie Fairchild (An American In Paris); former soloist of The Royal Ballet Eric Underwood; Mëtte Towley, a member of Pharrell Williams’ acclaimed dance troupe The Baes; Steven McRae, principal of The Royal Ballet.

The below-the-line team includes Oscar-nominated production designer Eve Stewart (The King’s Speech), cinematographer Christopher Ross (Terminal, Room), Oscar-nominated costume designer Paco Delgado (The Danish Girl), Oscar-winning sound mixer Simon Hayes (Les Misérables), BAFTA-winning executive music producer Marius De Vries (Moulin Rouge, Romeo + Juliet) and renowned casting director Lucy Bevan (Ready Player One, Murder on the Orient Express).

Edited by Dee

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The Cats Movie Will Shrink Actors to Feline Size and Add Performance Capture Fur

I thought this was an April Fool's joke, but it was published today.

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At the end of Universal Pictures’ presentation at CinemaCon, it screened a behind the scenes sizzle reel for Cats. It was the only film from the studio’s upcoming slate that didn’t show any final footage, because production just recently completed and there wasn’t any finished footage to show.

In the reel, which was largely shot on set, Hooper revealed he wanted to bring the musical to life in a very 2019 way. To do that he’s using performance capture to make his actors look like they have real fur on them. And so what the audience saw at the presentation were clips of actors in those fancy suits, complete with dots and everything. Some had cameras attached to their heads, others did not. It’ll eventually look something like Avatar’s Na’vi, but with fur, and the actors said they studied cat movements for the film.

Also, much of those soon-to-be digitally enhanced performances were shot on sets that are three to four times their usual size, to give the actors “a cat’s eye view.” In other words, they’re going to be the size of cats as they sing. Huge chairs and tables with the actors running and dancing under them.

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Well, even if this movie sucks, at least "Memory" will be sung like the showstopper it is.

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Well, this movie is going to be... something. I will say that the small cats/big world thing doesn't look quite as ridiculous as I was imagining.

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How did nobody, at no point during this entire process, not say "Hmm, y'know, maybe not."?

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Really? They couldn't have just put the costumes and makeup from the original show?!

"Memory" at least sounds good.

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On 4/5/2019 at 6:22 AM, Spartan Girl said:

Well, even if this movie sucks, at least "Memory" will be sung like the showstopper it is.

That was my biggest takeaway, Jenifer Hudson is going to kill it. What little we heard was fantastic.

My other takeaway is Idris is going to be one BAMF cat! 😁

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2 hours ago, Cranberry said:

Well, this movie is going to be... something.

Can't argue with that!

I dip cautious toes in the musical theater world, so this is definitely a litter box too far for me. Call me when In The Heights comes out.

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I am weirdly entranced and repulsed at the same time. I think my brain is broken. 

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They do look like horrifying cat-human hybrids, no doubt.  Jennifer Hudson‘s head looked like it was floating on that cat body.

But the choreography is beautiful.  The lead looked so graceful and lovely.  I can see why that would translate better on stage.  Still creepy looking creatures.  And are they supposed to be miniature?

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On 4/5/2019 at 4:22 AM, Spartan Girl said:

Well, even if this movie sucks, at least "Memory" will be sung like the showstopper it is.

Exactly.

Good God that scene of JHud belting it out....I'll go just for that.  Will be nice for the Taylor Swift stans to see her next to someone who can actually sing.

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No. Just no.  

Wait, one more thing, why?

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WTH! That has got to be creepiest thing that I have ever seen. I can't even come up with the words to describe it.

Why does Idris Elba keep taking these RIDICULOUS roles?! He needs a better agent. I volunteer.

Edited by SimoneS
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Hard pass. I finally have a reason to use that saying and truly mean it. 

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15 hours ago, mariah23 said:

Is it just me or do the cats look freakin’ scary?!

The CGI fur looks horrible.  Hopefully, it will look better on the big screen. 

I love this musical for sentimental reasons--I loved my high school musicals and this was the first professional production I ever attended--and I do love the music, but my thoughts after the trailer are these:

1.  Not every musical needs to be turned into a movie.

2.  The slapstick humor moment from Rebel's character took me out of it. 

3. As I said above, the CGI looks horrible.

However, I do agree with @Amethyst that some of the choreography looks beautiful, I do love Jennifer's voice and I agree with @Cranberry that the big world/small cat thing looks pretty good.  

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12 hours ago, Amethyst said:

 The lead looked so graceful and lovely

She's the principal ballerina for the Royal Ballet.

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I always liked the songs. The dancing in this looks amazing. The costumes always freak me out though. 

I'll wait for the reviews. And even then, if I watch this, it won't be in the movie theater. Most likely will borrow from the library so I don't have to pay. 

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I think regardless of how good or bad the rest of this movie is, Rebel Wilson's shtick will drag it down. I first saw her in Pitch Perfect and I thought she was used well there; she had a few quips and stole a scene or two, but then they expanded her role in Pitch Perfects 2 and 3 and it was just way too much... and in everything else I've seen her in since, it's been way too much. Even her little bit in the trailer didn't seem to match the general tone.

I like Taylor Swift fine. Her appeal has always been more in her lyrics than her singing talent, for me. She's fine, just not amazing. Both she and Hudson reportedly have original songs on the soundtrack, and I'm interested to hear those.

(I'm not expecting much from Swift's attempt at a British accent, though.)

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My favorite reactions are the ones that invoke this guy.

1983 GIF
 

I had zero interest in Cats but oof the look of those cats is a choice.

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Years ago I watched my cat have a nightmare.  I think I now know what it was about.

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They really did a horrible job on the fur, it would have looked better if they had just stuck the actors in cat suits.

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22 hours ago, BetterButter said:

tumblr_opyhhkqd5e1qa3emao5_540.gif

Every day I become more and more convinced that the devil walks among us in the form of Tom Hooper.

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Here’s my two cents:  the more I could recognize the actor, the more the cg creeped me out.

having said that, I love the musical, and they still have my money.

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On 11/8/2018 at 5:59 PM, Penguins71 said:

I think you mean Tom Hooper and not Tobe Hooper as director[...](and I could never imagine Cats in is wheelhouse)

Now that I've seen the trailer, I'm pretty sure @Dee was right the first time.

This has Tobe Hooper's fingerprints all over it.

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I guess Rebel Wilson is playing Rebel Wilson again.

Because that's about her limit as a performer.

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I'm pretty sure I've had nightmares like this trailer. That said I will almost certainly watch this to see Jennifer Hudson sing the he'll out of Memories. But probably when it's streaming and I can drink a bottle of wine. 

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2 hours ago, starri said:

I guess Rebel Wilson is playing Rebel Wilson again.

Because that's about her limit as a performer.

She is entering post Mellisa McCarthy level of annoying. 

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1 hour ago, shoregirl said:

I'm pretty sure I've had nightmares like this trailer. That said I will almost certainly watch this to see Jennifer Hudson sing the he'll out of Memories. But probably when it's streaming and I can drink a bottle of wine. 

My local (chain!) theater sells wine and beer.  I suspect alcohol might be helpful if you had to watch this on the big screen.

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