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Steven McRae Will Play Skimbleshanks in the CATS Film

Steven McRae Will Play Skimbleshanks in the CATS Film

The Cats film has found its Railway Cat!

Steven McRae, a principal dancer for the Royal Ballet, will take on the role of Skimbleshanks in the upcoming movie adaptation of Cats, according to Deadline.

As previously announced, McRae joins fellow Royal Ballet principal Francesca Haward in the new role of Victoria, as well as Judi Dench, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Taylor Swift, James Corden, Ian McKellen, Laurie Davidson, and Mette Towley.

McRae graduated into The Royal Ballet in 2004 and was promoted to first artist in 2005, soloist in 2006, first soloist in 2008 and principal in 2009. Previous roles include Magician/Mad Hatter in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Jack in Sweet Violet, and Florizel in The Winter's Tale. He was most recently seen in the Royal Ballet's production of Mayerling.

Watch a video of him in action below:

Rehearsals for the Cats film are taking place in the UK, ahead of a December 2019 release.

The film is directed by Tom Hooper. Hooper will also produce alongside Working Title's Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and fellow Les Misérables producer Debra Hayward. Steven Spielberg, Lloyd Webber and Angela Morrison are EPs on the feature.

Read more on Deadline.

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, Catsopened 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.

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