6 Cats Who Made a Mark on the Silver Screen
Before YouTube made cute cat videos all the more accessible, these felines dominated the big screen—and made names for themselves alongside Hollywood’s biggest stars.
Filmmakers launched a nationwide search to find the perfect feline to star alongside Kim Novak and James Stewart in 1958's Bell, Book, and Candle, which was based on a play of the same name. "We want a cat with an Ava Gardner personality," producer Julian Blaustein told the Deseret News in 1957. "We interviewed some alley cats, er, short-haired domestics. But we decided to go for Siamese. The cat has to have an air of mystery." The producers eventually settled on a Siamese owned by Hollywood animal trainer Frank Inn to play Pyewacket, a magical feline belonging to witch Gillian Holroyd (Novak). While there is some debate about how many cats were actually used in the film—some say as many as nine—at least one of them was named Pyewacket after the feline character, and Novak may have taken that cat home after filming. The cat (or cats) won the Humane Society's PATSY (Picture Animal Top Star of the Year) Award in 1958.