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The Cats butthole cut was real, VFX artist confirms

(Image credit: Universal)

There were rumours, some time ago, that somewhere – locked away – a so-called "butthole cut" of the critically mauled movie adaptation of the musical Cats exists. And while the source of that rumour remained unclaimed for some time, The Daily Beast has finally tracked down the VFX artist responsible for removing the buttholes.

Before I go on, I should probably explain what the "butthole cut" is. Rumours swirled earlier this year that director Tom Hooper, in an earnest attempt to bring a certain sense of realness to Cats, gave all the cats buttholes. Thanks to the new report, we have confirmation that – halfway through making the movie – the editors realised that these buttholes were present. 

“When we were looking at the playbacks, we were like, ‘What the hell? You guys see that?!’” an unnamed source who worked on the visual effects told the publication.

“We paused it. We went to call our supervisor, and we’re like, ‘There’s a fucking asshole in there! There’s buttholes!’ It wasn’t prominent but you saw it… And you [were] just like, ‘What the hell is that?... There’s a fucking butthole in there.’ It wasn’t in your face – but at the same time, too, if you’re looking, you’ll see it.”

It turns out, the addition of the buttholes to the cats was not one of Hooper's artistic decisions. “There was nobody that said, ‘We want buttholes,’" the source continues. "It was one of those things that just happened and slipped through.” 

One poor, poor visual artist was then tasked with ridding the movie of all its buttholes. And the result is what we saw on screen in December. 

Did Cats make our best movies of 2019 list? Of course not! But you can check the list out through that link.

I'm the Entertainment Editor over here at GamesRadar+, bringing you all the latest movie and TV news, reviews, and features. I look after all the Total Film and SFX articles that end up on the website