The 2019 musical movie Cats is something a lot of its star-studded cast would probably rather forget — but for Idris Elba, who played Macavity in the animated movie, that proved extra difficult — as his Fast and Furious co-stars couldn’t help but make fun of him.
Macavity is the main antagonist of Cats, known for his teleportation powers, criminal doings, and randomly becoming naked halfway through the movie as he (cat)naps various Jellicle cats in order to be taken to the Heaviside Layer. The movie was a critical and commercial failure, serving as an embarrassment for all those who took part and leading to Andrew Lloyd Webber, the creator of the original Cats musical, getting a therapy dog.
In fairness to Elba, it wasn’t like people didn’t warn him about getting involved with Cats: speaking on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, he revealed that his Fast and Furious castmates wouldn’t stop taking the piss once they discovered that his next project after the thriller movie would be Cats.
“So, I’m working with Dwayne [Johnson] and Jason [Statham],” Elba recalled.
“And as soon as they found out I was working on Cats, this was their favourite thing to do: as I walked on set, we’re doing this big fight scene, and I’m walking in looking all bravado, and they were like, ‘Hey Idris, what are you doing next?’ And the crew would be like, ‘What are you doing next?’ Cats. Hobbs & Shaw, Fast and Furious… Cats.”
The good news is that being made fun of for being in Cats before the movie was released meant that Elba would’ve been somewhat prepared by the time the movie reached the public domain.