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Julia Stiles

Misunderstood upon its release, 'Josie and the Pussycats' was ahead of its time

Misunderstood upon its release, 'Josie and the Pussycats' was ahead of its time

“Lame.” “Off-putting.” “Spectacularly bad.”

Movie critics were not kind to “Josie and the Pussycats” when it came out in 2001.

Based on the fantasy girl group from the old Archie comics, the film sought to bring singer-guitarist Josie McCoy and her friends (who’d also been the subjects of an early-’70s cartoon) into the age of ’N Sync and MTV’s “Total Request Live.”

Rachael Leigh Cook, fresh off her success in the teen hit “She’s All That,” donned a pair of fuzzy cat ears to play Josie, while a strong supporting cast featured Rosario Dawson and Tara Reid (as the Pussycats) and Alan Cumming and Parker Posey (as conniving record execs out to exploit the band).

Even...

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