Cats receives a 2.0 release with amended CGI after backlash

The new Cats Movie has been far from enthusiastically received, and the producers of the movie have responded swiftly in an attempt to ward off criticism. CGI effects in Cats have been strongly criticized, and this has led to what is effectively a Cats 2.0 release.
Cats movie
The Cats movie has been a logistical nightmare for its distributor Universal due to CGI issues. Photo: Universal Pictures.

CGI issues

CGI effects included in the original Cats movie were subjected to a torrent of criticism, meaning that the move was not particularly warmly received. Considering that Cats is supposed to be a massive movie for Amblin Entertainment and Universal, the producers have moved quickly in an attempt to ward off critics.

Indeed, the move to update the CGI is virtually unheard of for a movie of this magnitude, and is an acknowledgement that something is seriously awry with what is expected to be a big hit for Universal.

A memo obtained by the The Hollywood Reporter, notes that “the updated movie will be available to download Sunday via a satellite server, while exhibitors who don’t have access to the server will receive a hard drive by Tuesday, per Universal’s note. The studio is asking that theaters replace the current print of Cats as soon as possible.”

Cats Movie
Judi Dench is one of the major stars of what is becoming a commercial disaster. Photo: Tony Hisgett via Flickr.

Clunky errors

There have been so many clunky errors in Cats that those attending the original version have spotted no end of utter clangers. Most of the issues revolve around CGI failing to transform actors to the cat-based appearance that is required. Tweets on the original Cats mix have been pretty brutal, and clearly Universal have concluded that the issues need to be addressed ASAP.

With a backlash facing producers, director Tom Hooper has been open about the issues that the movie has faced, and also about the eleventh hour amendments that the studio has been forced to deliver. In fact, the updates to the movie were finished merely hours before its release, after an intense 36-hour cram intended to get the picture over the line.

While CGI plays a major role in many recent movie releases, there can also be major problems with some of the quality of animation delivered. One of the most prominent disasters of recent months befell the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, with the trailer for the Paramount picture having been savaged by Sonic fans.

Cats CGI
The Sonic the Hedgehog movie is another recent release which suffered from major CGI issues. Photo: GMBox.

Back to the drawing board

This provoked the producers to go back to the drawing board with the design of Sonic, and it seems that the makers of Cats have now also been forced to make major adjustments due to faulty CGI rendering.

Early reviews of Cats have been less than favorable, and this has resulted in the movie performing in a less than stellar fashion at the box office. In the US, Cats took $6.5 million on its opening day, while it managed £3.3 million ($4.3 million) from its release in the UK and Ireland, which resulted in a total worldwide opening that was well below the $20 million that analysts predicted.

Universal will now be hopeful that the tweaks help reinvigorate the sagging performance of Cats at the box office.

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