The Phantom of the Opera, Chicago, and Les Misérables are three of the most popular Broadway musicals that have made their way to the big screen. Now it looks like Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats is going to to join them. It was only a matter of time before Cats got its feature film debut. The news comes from Webber himself in an interview with The Daily Mail when he said,
“I haven’t seen the [Les Mis] film but it’s fantastic for musicals because everybody wants to make them again. Universal has now got Cats out of the drawer in which they locked it years ago when they bought the rights and suddenly they’re talking about a film.”
Cats is one of Broadway-s longest-running musicals. It's been around since 1982, and it's based on T.S. Eliot‘s poetry collection Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats. There was an attempt to turn this into a film back in the '90s with Steven Spielberg attached to produce it, but it obviously never happened. With the Tom Hooper-directed Les Mis pulling in $441 million, being nominated for five Oscars, and winning three, of course the studio is going to want to push Cats into production!
I grew up with a dad whh had a talent for singing and did a lot of musical theater, so I was always around musicals and am very familiar with Cats. I think it will make for a great film. Not sure how other people would feel about seeing singing cats, but Webber went on to say,
“You never know in life. We never knew whether the public was going to love Cats until the moment we saw a cat go on stage. It could have been the most terrible moment of bathos in musical theatre. I remember sitting backstage waiting for the response. Somehow we got away with it.”
I think the film would work great as a hybrid of live-action and animation. Maybe do it with motion capture technology to bring the cat characters to life. I don't know, but the music is great! Here's one of the more popular songs, "Memory."