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Working Title and Universal’s much-discussed movie adaptation of the hit Cats musical has grown some sizable claws.
Taylor Swift, Jennifer Hudson, James Corden and Ian McKellen are set to star in the film, to be directed by Tom Hooper and telling 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.
Sources tell THR that Hudson will play Grizabella, a former “glamour cat” ostracised by the Jellicles, McKellan will play Old Deuteronomy, the elderly Jellicle Leader, and Swift is being eyed for Bombalurina, a flirtatious red cat.
The musical — which is the fourth-longest-running show in Broadway history, and was the longest running Broadway show in history from 1997 until 2006 — features some of the best known songs from the stage, including “Memory.”
Production on Cats is set to take place later this year in the U.K., with more cast due to be announced. Lee Hall (Billy Elliot) has adapted Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical, which itself was based on the T.S. Eliot novel Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats.
Hooper, who directed the Oscar-winning The King’s Speech, is also no stranger to musical adaptations, having previously teamed with Working Title and Universal on 2012’s Les Miserables, which was a major box-office and awards-season success back in 2012.
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