It seems that the success of “La La Land” and “The Greatest Showman” has reignited the musical craze. We getting a modern adaptation of “A Star is Born” in December and Lin-Manuel Miranda is directing a “Tick, Tick…Boom!” adaptation. However, one of the biggest Broadway titles has never been adapted for film. “Cats” was one of Andrew Lloyd Webber‘s greatest hits and went on to win 7 Tonys. It was also a blockbuster that transcended Broadway to become a pop culture sensation. Now, Tom Hooper, director of “Les Miserables” in 2012, will bring the story to screen with an all-star cast headlined by Jennifer Hudson.
According to Deadline, Hooper added the first four members of his cast. Hudson is on board and rumored to play Grizabella, the showcase role of the musical. It has also added Ian McKellan, James Cordon, and Taylor Swift. If this is the beginning of the cast, this is likely to be a loaded ensemble.
The story of “Cats” is a little confusing at times, as the show is more a collection of songs than a narrative musical. The plot follows a tribe of cats known as the “Jellicle” cats. The group of cats must decide which member of the tribe will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and will be reborn. How they proceed to tell the story will be interesting, as the narrative is not particularly compelling as much as the visuals and quality of songs. What if Hooper chooses to use CGI or motion-capture over practical makeup? That may cause a riot among the Broadway faithful. The way in which Hooper chooses to adapt the visual of the stage will also be very interesting to keep an eye on.