Studio Makes 'Unheard of' Move on Cats

Theaters will receive a version with tweaked special effects by Tuesday
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 23, 2019 4:30 PM CST
Studio Makes 'Unheard of' Move on Cats
Francesca Hayward as Victoria in a scene from "Cats."   (Universal Pictures via AP)

(Newser) – No sooner had Cats opened at theaters everywhere Friday than operators were told they'd be getting a new version. A memo says the tweaked film will have "improved visual effects." Studio executives and theater operators said sending out a reedited copy after the film has been released is unheard of, the Hollywood Reporter reports. The director had complained that he'd rushed to finish in time for the Dec. 16 premiere in New York. "I finished it at 8 a.m. yesterday after 36 hours in a row," Tom Hooper said at the time, per Variety. "I just put the finishing touches on." The extensive CGI work—with "digital fur technology"—evidently slowed things up.

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Critics and moviegoers might suggest Hooper do more than tweak special effects. Cats received a C+ CinemaScore from customers and 19% on Rotten Tomatoes. Many reviews were brutal; one critic wrote that her cat might have been able to make a better film. The film came in a distant fourth in the weekend box office. Theaters that download titles will be able to get the new version Sunday, and those that wait for a hard drive should have it Tuesday. (Read more movie industry stories.)

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