Cats star Jason Derulo has dismissed scathing reviews of the film and insisted it is “an incredible piece of art”.
The long-awaited big-screen adaption of Lord Lloyd-Webber’s popular 1981 musical was met with a largely negative response following its world premiere earlier this week.
A reviewer in one national newspaper gave the film zero stars out of five, describing it as an “all-time disaster”.
Cats’ visual style – employing CGI human-cat hybrids – prompted particularly strong criticism.
However Derulo, part of a star-studded cast that includes Taylor Swift, James Corden and Idris Elba, told US outlet TMZ “reviews don’t matter”.
The singer plays Rum Tum Tugger in the film and said it will take viewers to “another dimension”.
Derulo, 30, suggested the Cats stage musical also had mixed reviews when it opened on Broadway before it became one of the most successful productions ever.
He added: “Any time you defy what an art form is, any time you defy all rules, there’s going to be some push-back, obviously. But it’s an incredible piece of art done by some of the best people in the world.”
Derulo called director Tom Hooper a “class act” before questioning the validity of the reviewers’ opinions.
He said: “I am just excited for the people to actually see it because reviewers, I mean, what the hell do they know? Have they made a film ever in their life?”
The first trailer for Cats arrived in July and its visual style caused widespread bafflement on the internet.
Reviews arrived on Thursday and the Daily Telegraph’s Tim Robey gave it zero stars, writing: “Once seen, the only realistic way to fix Cats would be to spay it, or simply pretend it never happened.”
Writing for Variety, Peter Debruge described Hooper’s film as an “outlandishly tacky interpretation” of the musical, predicting it will become “one of those once-in-a-blue-moon embarrassments that mars the resumes of great actors”.
But not everyone was hissing at the film, with the Daily Mail’s Brian Viner awarding four stars out of five. He wrote that “eight out of 10 cinemagoers will say that they’ve enjoyed it, as long as they go along prepared for what they’re about to see, which is essentially a feline-themed ballet”.
Cats will be released in UK cinemas on December 20.