Josie and the Pussycats (2001)
Josie and the Pussycats is a 2001 film loosely based on the Archie comic series and Hanna Barbera cartoon of the same name starring Rachael Leigh Cook, Tara Reid and Rosario Dawson as the Pussycats and co-stars Alan Cumming.
Josie's band is struggling financially and have to find out how to get their music back on the road in order to be more successful.
Why It Sucks
- The story is weak.
- Poor grasp of the source material.
- Despite being based on the cartoon series, William Hanna and Joseph Barbera had no involvement in making the film.
- The film has a number of product placements (mentioned in "Reception").
- Pointless cameos by various celebrities including Eugene Levy, Donald Faison, Seth Green and Breckin Meyer.
- There's a sex scene in a film based on a 1970s cartoon.
- Outlandish outfits for our main characters.
- Putting material with mentioning governmental and financial topics in a film based on a cartoon is ridiculous and pointless.
- Making a PG-13 rated film based on a beloved cartoon that was for kids was awful. However, there is a PG-rated version of the film on DVD that's family-friendly.
The Only Redeeming Quality
- Good soundtrack.
The film received mixed-to-negative reviews from fans of the TV show, critics and audiences alike. The film currently holds a 52% on Rotten Tomatoes with an average of 5.2 out of 10 and a critic consensus stating: "This live-action update of Josie and the Pussycats offers up bubbly, fluffy fun, but the constant appearance of product placements seems rather hypocritical." Roger Ebert awarded the film with 1/2 a star out of four and stated in his review that the lead characters were "as dumb as the Spice Girls."
The film had a budget of $39 million and only earned $15 million at the box office, making it a box office bomb.
- On the poster featuring the main characters, Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz, and Lucy Liu were shown to be cast to play the band in an upcoming movie. Peter Teschner, the editor of Josie and the Pussycats was also the editor of the 2000 film Charlie's Angels.
- Tara Reid and Carson Daly started dating after meeting on set during his cameo in this film. They eventually became engaged before ending their relationship in June 2001.
- Brandy Norwood and the late Aaliyah were considered for the role of Valerie Brown.
- Justin Chatwin's film debut (who would later play Goku in Dragonball: Evolution eight years later).
- Aaliyah was considered for the role of Valerie Brown. The film features a scene of a plane crash. Eerily enough she and eight members of her crew would then die in a plane crash on August 25, 2001 after filming her music video "Rock The Boat" four months after this film's theatrical release.
- Co-director Harry Elfont revealed during the film's 16th anniversary celebration in 2017 that Beyoncé, Aaliyah, and TLC's Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes all auditioned for the film. They read Left Eye twice, as she really wanted to play the role. Elfont describes Beyoncé as shy and quiet, while Aaliyah as more serious and thoughtful, whereas the film is a comedy.
- This was the second time Donald Faison and Breckin Meyer worked together since Clueless.
- During the TRL scene, the cardboard cut-outs in the "audience" feature Johnny Depp (2), Gwen Stefani (2), Christina Aguilera (2), Britney Spears, and Matt Damon. Melody defends herself with Britney and Christina, but Carson Daly hits the cut-outs with a baseball bat. Melody eventually clubs Carson with the Matt Damon cut-out and knocks him off the bleachers.
- Rachel Leigh Cook and Alan Cumming had previously worked together in the 2000 remake of Get Carter.