Universal Studios Boss Donna Langley didn’t have any trailers for Cats, the studio’s feature take on the hit Andrew Lloyd Weber musical because as actor James Corden said in the reel “it’s a level of technology which hasn’t been used before.”
So they tickled attendees this morning with a BTS look showing the dancers coming together as felines, the mo-cap being used, and Taylor Swift leading a pack of cats in strut.
Director Tom Hooper said in the reel that he’s aiming to capture the experience of the musical “when I was 10 years old.” Judi Dench said “It’s a massive undertaking” as the actors, well, studied cats. The backstage look also featured Idris Elba, Rebel Wilson, Ian McKellen, ballerina Francesca Haywardand more.
Hooper promised a Cats “on a much bigger scale than you can possibly imagine. We wanted to make a 2019 version that was thoroughly our own, with digital technology to create the most perfect covering of fur.”
Said Elba, “You step into a world where everything is three or four times bigger than it would usually be, for the cats perspective.” The peek indeed showed massive scale. Hooper also called the story timely as one of “inclusion, community, forgiveness and redemption” and said it will stay true to Lloyd Webber’s music, adding, “I can’t wait for the world to see what we’ve been cooking up and working on secretly for the past three or four years.”
Uni closed out the sessions with Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson live on stage — she plays Grizabella in the film — singing the show’s hit song “Memory.” It was sublime — she started off a-capella with the lyrics evolving to only a piano backing her up, her voice triumphing in the Coliseum here at Caesar’s Palace.
Hooper recorded his actors live on set with Les Miserables, and Hudson here is just a great glimpse at the awesomeness for us to behold this Christmas.