What are the Most Famous Cats in Movie and TV History?

Internet favorite cats, as a centuries-old cinema staple, starred in some legendary films and popular series with their iconic roles as furry feline, cute or creepy, soft-hearted and spirited Donskoy cat breed and everything in between, from kittens to big cats in the Felidae family, legendary cartoon cat to an anthropomorphic creature.

With memorable lines and captivating characters—secretive yet affectionate, cute yet playful, and funny and intelligent—cats captured our hearts and made us all fall in love. 

Take a trip down memory lane once again and fall in love with their angst, coolness, and magic! Here are the 12 most famous cats in films and television history.

Catbus, My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

Catbus, My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

Inspired by the Cheshire Cat from 1951 Alice in Wonderland, Catbus, a large cat-bus creature with windows, is a well-known character in Japan from Studio Ghibli’s 1988 Japanese animated fantasy film My Neighbor Totoro.

Totoro, the King of the Forest, seems to control Catbus in the popular film. Well-loved by Ghibli fans, Catbus became a popular plushie worldwide. How cute!

Jiji, Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989)

Studio Ghibli’s famous black cat with large white eyes and black pupils, Jiji, is Kiki’s magical pet cat while training to become a full-fledged witch. In the original beloved Japanese coming-of-age story, Jiji is a cautious and conscience-like creature, while on the Disney version, Jiji seems chatty and sarcastic cat.

Created by famous animator, director, and screenwriter Hayao Miyazaki, this adorable black cat represents the childish side of Kiki.

Fat Louie, Princess Diaries

Best friend of Mia Mignonette Thermopolis Renaldi in the Princess Diaries series, Fat Louie is a black and white tuxedo cat who loves collecting shiny objects.

Fun fact! Fat Louie loves Mia even before her grand makeover from an awkward, nerdy 16-year-old girl who turned out to be of royal blood—a princess and the future queen of the fictional country of Genovia. Anyway, cats think they are of royal blood.

Mrs. Norris, Harry Potter series

Loved for their mysterious and intriguing characters in films, cats played the roles of stereotypical magical creatures with wizards, witches, owls, and toads. In the wizarding world of legendary J.K. Rowling, cats are the genuine stars in the hearts of “Potterheads.”

With her dust-colored furry star and yellow and lamp-like eyes, Mrs. Norris lived as a distinguished cat sniffing out rule-breakers in the fantastical world of Harry Potter and as a pet cat of Argus Filch, the caretaker of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft.

Potterhead or not, you’ll love to see other furry stars live in magic and spells, such as the unnamed cat of Millicent Bulstrode, Mrs. Figg’s cat, Hermione’s Crookshanks, and Minerva McGonagall.

Aslan, The Chronicles of Narnia

King of the World of Narnia, Aslan, is a noble golden lion with superhuman powers and invulnerability as the divine Son of the Emperor-Beyond-The-Sea. Singing the world of Narnia into existence, Aslan created Narnia in the Earth in 1900.

Epitomizing the goodness and justice of Narnia, Aslan is the only character to appear in all seven novels written by C. S. Lewis and three adapted film series.

Richard Parker, Life of Pi (2012)

Is your little cat like a tiger? In 2012 adventure drama film based on Yann Martel’s 2001 novel, Pi embraces adventure and survival in a trans-Atlantic voyage with his only companion Richard Parker, an adult Bengal tiger.

Directed by Academy award-winning director Ang Lee, the filmmakers of Life of Pi set the bar high for CGI. They presented visual-effects triumphs and a memorable story of a protagonist with a tiger in some real-world life-changing challenges. 

Meowth in Pokémon

Meowth, I Choose You! Have you ever loved a villain? 

A memorable character who appeared in the Pokémon adventures and manga adaptations, Meowth is a beloved villain, perhaps as remarkable as Pikachu.

Known as one of the three primary Team Rocket antagonists, alongside Jessi and James, in the anime series, Meowth or Nyarth, is a normal-type Pokemon who strengthens into Persian starting at level 28. With the Gigantamax Factor, Meowth cannot evolve. Meowth loves Meowzie, and yes, we love them both! 

Puss in Boots, Shrek 2, Puss in Boots 3D

Debuted in 2004’s Shrek 2, Puss in Boots, is a Spanish-speaking, golden British shorthair, an anthropomorphic cat with ginger fur and big black eyes, musketeer hat, and signature pair of boots.

In the 2011 fantasy-adventure comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation, Puss in Boots embarked on a thrilling adventure while showcasing his Zorro-style sword fighting. 

Garfield, Garfield: The Movie

Our beloved Garfield is now part of the Nickelodeon family from Jim Davis’s prized comic creation.

This sarcastic orange cat who hates Mondays and exercise starred in Garfield and Friends’ television series and theatrical films Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties and Garfield’s The Movie.

Voiced by Bill Murray, this lazy, eponymous Classic cartoon cat is known for his love of coffee, pizza, and lasagna. Love that pasta passion!

Tom in Tom & Jerry

We will never miss Jasper, Jinx’s pair in Tom and Jerry, the classic cat and mouse duo in history.

A domestic cat with crazy fails and epic episodes, Tom has a 2021 big-screen adventure in Tom & Jerry: The Movie, a live-action-animated comedy film based on the titular cartoon characters.

Formerly known as “Jasper,” this iconic blue or grey domestic shorthair cat in enduring American animated comedy series created in 1940 has lived on in many revivals with his cartoon adversary, Jerry.

Though Tom and Jerry are humorous characters, dark urban legends often depict the comic duo’s terrifying deaths.

Tom in Tom & Jerry

Hello Kitty from Japanese Kawaii

Cat or girl, Hello Kitty is a popular “gijinka” character or a form of anthropomorphism that refers to non-human creatures or objects re-imagined as humans.

Our favorite cartoon character in its TV Animated series is widely known as a cat; however, this simple yet famed cat-like creature is a little girl with a cat of her own named Charmmy Kitty.

A staple character from Japanese “kawaii” created by Yuko Shimizu and produced by the Japanese company Sanrio, Hello Kitty’s upcoming live-action hybrid film is coming in 2022.

Simba in Lion King

All hail the King of the Pride Rock! 

King of the Beast Simba is undoubtedly the renowned big cat of all time on screen.

Simba, the Son of Mufasa and Sarabi, is the rightful heir to the throne.

As the original Lion King protagonist in the 1994 Disney animated feature film, and in the 2019 American musical drama film of the same title, Simba faced the trauma of his father’s tragic death and the terror of conspiracies by his Machiavellian envious uncle Scar. 

Meeting up with two outcasts named Timon and Pumbaa, Simba embraces their ways of “Hakuna Matata,” finding love, bravery, and courage.

With stunning visual effects, memorable soundtracks, top-notch vocal performances, and captivating characters, Lion King’s Simba is one of the most prominent characters of all time and the world’s famous big cat in film history.