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Judi Dench Signs On To Play Old Deuteronomy in Upcoming CATS Film

Judi Dench Signs On To Play Old Deuteronomy in Upcoming CATS Film

It has been reported that Academy Award winner Judi Dench will join the already star-studded cast of an upcoming film adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats.

According to The Daily Mail, Dench will take on the role of Old Deuteronomy, a role traditionally cast as a male.

According to the report, in 1981 Dench signed on to portray the glamour cat, Grizabella, in the original West End run of the musical, but was forced to withdraw due to injury.

It was also reported this week that Idris Elba is in final talks to portray Macavity, The Napoleon of Crime.

Dench joins a cast already featuring Academy Award-winner Jennifer Hudson, Ian McKellen, James Corden, and pop star Taylor Swift.Tom Hooper will direct the project for Working Title pictures which is set to begin shooting in November in London.

Cats made its return to Broadway last summer at the Neil Simon Theatre and was also recently staged at the London Palladium for a limited 12-week run, starring former Pussycat Doll singer Nicole Scherzinger in the role of 'Grizabella'.

Composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and based on T.S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats," the original Broadway production opened in 1982 at Broadway's Winter Garden Theatre, where it ran for 7,485 performances and 18 years. Cats was originally produced on Broadway by Cameron Mackintosh, The Really Useful Company Limited, David Geffen, and The Shubert Organization.

Since its world premiere, Cats has been presented in over 30 countries, has been translated into 15 languages, and has been seen by more than 73 million people worldwide. Originally directed by Trevor Nunn with choreography and associate direction by Gillian Lynne, scenic and costume design by John Napier, lighting design by David Hersey, and sound design by Martin Levan, Cats opened in the West End in 1981. The same creative team brought the musical to Broadway in 1982 where it won seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Both the original London and Broadway cast recordings won GRAMMY AWARDS for Best Cast Album. Cats hit song "Memory" has been recorded by over 150 artists from Barbra Streisand and Johnny Mathis to Liberace and Barry Manilow.

The Tony Award-winning Best Musical held the title of longest-running musical in Broadway history until it was surpassed in 2006 by LES MISERABLES and later by Webber's THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. The original Broadway production closed on September 10, 2000 and is currently the fourth longest-running show in Broadway history.

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