Nine lives indeed. As Andrew Lloyd Weber prepares to bring his hit 1980s musical "Cats" back to London's West End for a limited run beginning in December, the composer is also hinting at the possibility of a feline film adaptation.
According to Reuters, at a launch event for the new stage revival on Monday, Weber said, "There is considerable talk at last about 'Cats' being made into a movie so it gives me a chance to think about the material and how that can happen."
Based on T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats," a collection of whimsical poems, "Cats" tells the story of a clan of cats gathering for an annual event in which one of them will be chosen to ascend to heaven and be reborn.
"Cats" stands as the second-longest running show in Broadway history, and, given Hollywood's proclivity for making movies based on proven intellectual property, it may seem puzzling that "Cats" has yet to come to the big screen.
The closest thing was a 1998 direct-to-video recording of the West End production, which was released on home video and has aired on television. During the 1990s, Steven Spielberg's Amblimation was also working on an animated adaptation that never materialized.
In recent years, stage musicals have been making something of a comeback on screen, though results have been mixed. While some adaptations have broken through commercially, such as "Mamma Mia!," "Hairspray" and "Les Miserables," others including "Rent," "The Phantom of the Opera," "The Producers" and Clint Eastwood's recent "Jersey Boys," have faltered at the box office.
That hasn't stopped Hollywood from trying to capitalize, though, as upcoming adaptations of "Annie" and "Into the Woods" attest.
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