Netflix gives up on ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ director’s outer space cat movie

Director Gore Verbinski attends 'La Cura del Bienestar' (A Cure for Wellness) photocall at the Palace Hotel on January 26, 2017 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)


Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images

Pirates of the Caribbean director Gore Verbinski‘s latest feature will now not premiere on Netflix. Cattywumpus is planned to be Verbinski’s second animated feature and is one to watch as his Johnny Depp starring weird Western Rango picked up the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature at the 2012 Oscars.

Little is known about Cattywumpus, save that it would be set in outer space and involve cats. Whether that would be Earth cats somehow sent to space or a race of interstellar feline creatures is unknown, but whatever the concept is, Deadline is confirming that the project will now be shopped around to other studios.

The news comes as Netflix re-evaluates its strategy after a much-noted dip in subscribers earlier in the year. Back in May, the streaming giant fired 150 people from the organization, with almost half of those cuts from their animation department.

At the time they justified this as “slowing revenue growth means we are also having to slow our cost growth as a company”, so bean counters have clearly decided that animation represents a relatively poorer value proposition for the company compared to live-action, despite seven of their animated movies scoring Academy Award nominations.

What the future holds for Cattywumpus is anyone’s guess. If Verbinski can repeat the success of Rango we should be in for a fun time. On the other hand, if it’s very early into production and the story doesn’t convince, maybe Cattywumpus won’t get picked up by a major studio and will remain adrift.

We guess that in space, no one can hear you meow.





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