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Andrew Lloyd Webber says he was so distraught after seeing the 'Cats' movie he got a therapy dog

"I saw and I just thought, 'Oh, God, no,'" the composer said. "It was the first time in my 70-odd years on this planet that I went out and bought a dog."
Image: Andrew Lloyd Webber
Andrew Lloyd Webber in March 2018.Maarten de Boer / NBCU Photo Bank file

Andrew Lloyd Webber revealed that he was so emotionally distraught after he saw the 2019 movie "Cats" that he got a dog.

In an interview with Variety, Lloyd Webber, the composer behind the musical, described the movie as "off-the-scale all wrong."

"There wasn't really any understanding of why the music ticked at all," he said. "I saw and I just thought, 'Oh, God, no.' It was the first time in my 70-odd years on this planet that I went out and bought a dog. So the one good thing to come out of it is my little Havanese puppy."

Lloyd Webber said he grew so attached to his new pet during the coronavirus pandemic that he even finagled a way to take it with him the last time he traveled on a plane to New York City.

"I wrote off and said I needed him with me at all times because I'm emotionally damaged and I must have this therapy dog," he said. "The airline wrote back and said, 'Can you prove that you really need him?' And I said 'Yes, just see what Hollywood did to my musical 'Cats.'"

Lloyd Webber said the airline gave him its approval with a note that said: "No doctor's report required."

Critics reviled "Cats" even before its official release in December 2019. The movie's trailer alone was subject to jokes; it was called "creepy and weird."

The film had an all-star cast, including Taylor Swift, Judi Dench, Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Rebel Wilson and James Corden. But ultimately it was a box office flop — it lost Universal Pictures an estimated $113 million, according to Deadline.

Universal Pictures is a unit of NBCUniversal, the parent company of NBC News.