It’s been announced that principal photography has begun for family adventure Paddington, based on the beloved fictional character bear, created by Michael Bond in 1958.
It’s also the first info we’ve had about the cast, which it has to be said is perhaps surprisingly good for the CG-live action mix. Colin Firth gets the lead role as the voice of Paddington Bear, with Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey) as Mr. Brown, who take in the bear from Deepest Darkest Peru when he arrives in London, and Nicole Kidman (The Hours, Rabbit Hole, Moulin Rouge) as an evil taxidermist determined to wreak her revenge. They are joined by Sally Hawkins as Mrs. Brown, Julie Walters as Mrs. Bird, the housekeeper, and Jim Broadbent as Mr. Gruber, the owner of the antiques shop.
The movie will follow the comic misadventures of a young Peruvian bear with a passion for all things British who travels to London in search of a home. Finding himself lost and alone at Paddington Station, he begins to realize that city life is not all he had imagined – until he meets the kindly Brown family who read the label around his neck (‘Please look after this bear. Thank you.’) and offer him a temporary haven. It looks as though his luck has changed until this rarest of bears catches the eye of a museum taxidermist…
The film is produced by Harry Potter’s David Heyman, with Paul King (Come Fly with Me, The Mighty Boosh) directing. It’s due open in the UK November 28, 2014, with The Weinstein Company recently picking up the North American rights, with plans to release it there in the first quarter of 2015.