Scott Kowalchyk/CBS ©2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.(NEW YORK) — When it was released last month, the trailer for Cats polarized the internet, with reactions ranging from horror to laughter to confusion.  And of course, there were those who were just there for the shots of pop’s most famous cat lady, Taylor Swift, transformed into a real-life feline. 

But as of her co-stars tells ABC Radio, Taylor came on set knowing that playing her favorite animal onscreen wasn’t going to be easy.

Idris Elba, who plays Macavity the Mystery Cat in the film, tells ABC Radio, “Taylor…found herself in quite a vulnerable place.  Y’know, she sings and dances onscreen all the time in her music videos but this was acting — this was a slightly different thing. And she was very open about that.”

“Her and I worked together closely ’cause our characters did a song together,” Elba adds. “I really enjoyed her process. I really enjoyed her dedication.” Speaking of dedication, onscreen tough guy Elba told ABC he took yoga to limber himself up to play his feline character.

Incidentally, during an appearance earlier this week on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Elba seemed unable to explain the plot of Cats.

“It’s a big musical — and it’s uh, I guess it’s about a cat,” he said, as the audience roared with laughter.

He added, “It’s one cat’s journey towards what is, essentially, cat heaven…there’s this one young cat and she gets taken on a story about how to get to cat heaven,” then gave up, asking, “how am I doing? Does anyone know what the story is?”

Whatever it is, Cats struts into theaters December 20.

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