This feature film adaptation of the hit Broadway musical Cats has sure put together an impressive all star cast. Now we’ve learned that Judi Dench (James Bond) has also joined the Tom Hooper-directed production!
Deadline points out that Dench was originally set to play the character Grizabella in the original West End production back in 1981, but she ended up snapping her Achilles’ tendon shortly before previews began and had to drop out of the show.
All these years later she’ll finally get to be in it! Dench joins the previously cast Idris Elba, Taylor Swift, Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, James Corden, Laurie Davidson and Mette Towley. I know a lot of you aren’t really into musicals, but with a cast like this, is your interested peaked in seeing the movie?
Dench will take on the role of Deuteronomy, “a patriarch who by the end of the night will select a cat to be reborn into a new life on the Heaviside Layer, an annual feline tradition. Deuteronomy is a large old cat who has lived many lives and buried “nine wives,” though that line will have to change in the film.” This is an interesting casting choice because the role has traditionally been played onstage by a man.
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. The plot is actually pretty insane.
The screenplay for the film is being written by Lee Hall (Billy Elliot) and I’m kinda looking forward to it. My dad did a lot of musical theater when I was growing up so I’m very familiar with these Broadway musicals and Cats may be a weird one, but it is filled with some wonderful music.
Cats opens in theaters December 20, 2019.