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Film and TV

Critics clawed Cats so badly that the film is no longer being considered for the Oscars

Josh Milton December 29, 2019
Idris Elba as a naked, furry cat in Cats

Idris Elba as a furry, naked cat in the Cats trailer. (Twitter)

We live in a world where Australia and the Amazon rainforest are burning, where right-wing polemics are rocketing and where they actually made a Cats movie.

What proved to be one of the most anticipated films of the year quickly saw the milk turn sour as an avalanche of negative reviews piled up after Cats hit cinemas just over a week ago.

But it seems that Universal Studios has reportedly pulled the film from consideration for the Oscars.

According to Variety, the film is also not featured on the streaming platform of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, where members can watch contenders for the Oscars.

Cats made only about six per cent of its budget back in the box office.

Cats, directed by Tom Hooper, features a star-studded cast. Its IMDb page is practically a constellation, with Ian McKellen, Judi Dench, Taylor Swift and Idris Elba all starring.

However, this glitzy cast didn’t prove enough to save it from savage reviews from the press and cinema-goers.

Cats is a fever dream, a hallucination, an approximation of what would happen if your third eye actually opened and you could suddenly see into the astral plane,” wrote Polygon.

Judi Dench as a cat
Dame Judi Dench in the Cats movie trailer. (Universal)

“With its grotesque design choices and busy, metronomic editing, Cats is as uneasy on the eyes as a Hollywood spectacle can be, tumbling into an uncanny valley between mangy realism and dystopian artifice,” wrote the LA Times.

While the Financial Times branded the flick “worryingly erotic”.

But not only was the film – an adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical – critically panned, it was also a financial flop.

In the box office, it took in just $15.3 million worldwide in its first six days, against a budget of $100 million.

Films that are still currently listed on the studio’s publicly-available For Your Awards Consideration page include Us, 1917, Queen & Slim, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, Abominable and The Secret Life of Pets 2.

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