Director Tom Hooper must have thought he was onto a real winner when he decided to adapt Cats for the big screen. After all, the last time he tackled a beloved musical and turned it into a feature length movie, Les Miserables wound up scoring over $440 million at the box office and winning three Academy Awards from eight nominations.
The filmmaker behind The King’s Speech, Les Mis and The Danish Girl had earned a reputation as someone that almost guarantees awards season and box office success, with his last three efforts raking in a combined haul of almost $930 million and gathering a total of eight Oscar wins from 24 nods, so it stood to reason that Cats would do the same given the enduring popularity of the source material and the star-studded cast that had been assembled.
Instead, though, the end result was one of the most laughably awful movies ever made, one that tanked at the box office and ended up losing the studio over $100 million. A nightmarish musical that was wrong on so many levels, even the talent involved in Cats couldn’t find a way to defend it, while behind the scenes reports claimed that Hooper was well out of his league when it came to the extensive visual effects required to bring his terrifying vision to life.
Nobody seemed to have any interest in seeing Cats the first time around, but morbidly curious viewers can now rest easy knowing that the infamous disaster is heading to both HBO and HBO Max next month on October 10th. Sadly, however, the Justice League formula hasn’t been replicated, and it’s the theatrical edition that’s coming to streaming, not the Butthole Cut.