Cats, a vivid and intense fever dream of a movie that nobody wanted or asked for, is having a less-than-purrfect opening, with box office tracking sites reporting that it took in just $550,000 in its first day of previews.
To put that number in perspective, the heavily-hyped The Rise Of Skywalker, which also opened for preview showings on Thursday night in the United States, took in $40 million in the same time frame. That’s not great.
That $550,000 figure is based on Cats preview screenings in 2500 cinemas across the US, meaning a per-screen average of around $220. The film, an adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber‘s stage musical, expanded to 3300 US locations on Friday.
Current estimates predict that the Tom Hooper-directed movie will have a $14 million opening weekend. This means that the cats and their haunted human faces will have a long way to go to claw back the film’s reported $95 million budget.
Cats, which stars Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Idris Elba, James Corden, Jason Derulo, Jennifer Hudson, Rebel Wilson and Taylor Swift, tells the story of a group of felines coming together to decide which one will go to heaven.
The film features a variety of hallucinatory sequences, including one in which Rebel Wilson eats a singing cockroach, and another where Ian McKellen laps milk out of a bowl. If you’re game to check it out, the film is in Australian cinemas on Boxing Day.