Universal Pictures didn’t have any footage of Cats to debut at CinemaCon, so they gave audiences a taste of the movie courtesy of Jennifer Hudson.
The Oscar-winning actress took the stage to perform her character, Grizabella’s, song, “Memory.” It was revealed last July that Hudson was joining the film, alongside Taylor Swift, James Corden and Ian McKellen. Judi Dench, Idris Elba, Jason Derulo and Rebel Wilson also star in the adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical, which wrapped production on Saturday.
While shots from the actual Cats movie didn’t make it to CinemaCon, Universal did debut a behind-the-scenes featurette, which included dance rehearsals and the actors wearing VFX dots on their faces. Those dots — and motion-capture enabled leotards — will help create “digital fur technology to create the most perfect covering of fur,” director Tom Hooper said.
The upcoming film will feature another difference from the stage musical, which debuted on London’s West End in 1981. The scale of the movie will be cat-sized, with production designers having built oversized sets to make the actors appear smaller.
Cats takes place on a single night, centering on a group of felines called the Jellicles — who must determine which cat will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new life.
Hudson opened up about the movie while speaking with ET at the 2019 Oscars in February.
“It’s, like, something really special being made and… I’m just happy to be a part of it,” Hudson gushed. “… It’s just a live vibe. It’s done live on the set. It’s a lot of hard work. We’re creating it as we go, so it’s a lot if, you know, living in the moment.”
“It’s so uniquely done and we’re all creating something that does not have a vision to it,” she added. “So, we’re learning as we go. We’re creating as we go and we’re all surprising ourselves… It’s a new level from everyone. The director, from all the talent, the dancers and everybody is equally just as involved in it.”
See more in the video below.
More From ET: