It Is Time to Release The Butthole Cut of 'Cats'

The #ButtholeCut is a good place to start, but we have many more ideas of what untold horrors other ‘Cats’ cuts could have in store.

Cats
Co-written with Anna Swanson

When Cats was released last December to near-universal critical skewering, the cinematic adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Weber musical became a target for mockery the size of Mount Rushmore. The film’s confoundingly batshit qualities — namely, the entire goddamn thing — were seized by some of the more daring among us as fertile ground for rowdy and raucous screenings. “Fans” of the movie began to have impromptu sing-a-longs and initiate games of “spot the wedding ring,” with Cats well on its way to modern cult status.

Cats’ weak and astoundingly confusing assemblage (including misplaced cat arms and Dame Judi Dench’s wedding ring being left in) was only the tip of the iceberg. After the film’s initial release, a second cut was rushed to theaters with improved VFX, but a recent revelation has informed us that neither version gave audiences a, shall we say, full-on view of this magical, musical, Jellicle world.

We are now ready for the Butthole Cut of Tom Hooper’s motion picture Cats.

Why is #ReleaseTheButtholeCut trending right now?

Writer-Director Ben Mekler took to Twitter to bemoan the lack of information about the making of Tom Hooper’s fever dream Cats. We have all made similar pleas at some point in the intervening months since the film was unleashed upon the public. Making-of documentaries about banana pants productions hold a certain sick, chaotic appeal (think of Burden of Dreams and Jodorowsky’s Dune). And the dada-esque end-product of Cats demands an explanation. Preferably in the form of a five-part mini-series.

In reply to Mekler’s tweet, Jack Waz descended Moses-like from a virtual Mount Sinai to bless us with divine insight, only his tablets read: “A VFX producer friend of a friend was hired in November to finish some of the 400 effects shots in @catsmovie. His entire job was to remove CGI buttholes that had been inserted a few months before. This means that, somewhere out there, there exists a butthole cut of Cats.”

Like a match lit next to a mountain of dynamite, Twitter took this information and blew up. Rian Johnson got involved, tweeting that the Butthole Cut is “exactly what we all need right now.” Seth Rogen, who earlier had conducted a live-tweet of the film while stoned, joined in the butthole-obsessed online mob and tweeted his support for the movement.

Many films have “superior cuts,” from Blade Runner to The Devils. Surely, even at this early stage, we can all agree that the cats in the motion picture Cats having buttholes would be a net-positive.

The existence of the Butthole Cut (“The Cutthole”) is a revelation and there are a couple of things that must be true as a result:

  • Some heroic VFX artist(s?) were paid to create all of those CGI buttholes.
  • As one Twitter user points out, there must have been a conversation about both putting those buttholes IN and taking those buttholes OUT.

There are also many, many questions:

  • Was the digital fur technology designed to account for the presence of the buttholes?
  • What was the logic behind including the buttholes in the first place?
  • At what point in the production did the cowards in charge decide that the world was not ready for people-but-cats to have buttholes?
  • Does the Butthole Cut include litterboxes? Were these edited out of the final cut or never there in the first place?
  • Do the mice in the Butthole Cut also have buttholes?
  • As others have pointed out regarding Jurassic Park, the dinosaurs do not have buttholes. What does this newfound internet-driven obsession mean for the future of buttholes in cinema? Do we have butthole cuts of other movies to look forward to?
  • With several animated films being delayed indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, could studios use this time to add more buttholes? The internet successfully willed Sonic’s new set of chompers into existence. Can lightning strike twice?

Why stop at Buttholes?

We’re not ready to put this new information in our rear-view. And so we ask, dear reader, why simply stop with a butthole cut?

To bum a joke (haha) from a very good tweet: The Bubonic Plague’s impact resulted in wide-ranging social, economic, cultural, and religious changes. These changes, directly and indirectly, led to the emergence of the Renaissance, one of the greatest epochs for art, architecture, and literature in human history. For us, this can only mean more Cats.

Give us the no-CGI cut. Give us the “everyone is a cat except for Dame Judi Dench cut.” Give us the movie about Tom Hooper spending 36 hours in a row working on the film just before it premiered.

Cats have nine lives, we should have at least as many cuts of this film.

 

Update (Butt-date?)

Mekler received word from the anonymous Cats VFX crewmember. In the update, the crewmember clarifies that there were never intentional buttholes so much as accidental, suspiciously butthole- and vagina-shaped caverns courtesy of digital fur technology. This is, of course, much, much funnier than intentional buttholes. And look, if it looks like a butthole, intentional or not, it’s part of the Butthole Cut.

Burgeoning wine mom and talented napper. Secretly just three toddlers in a trenchcoat.