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Tuesday 29 Jul 2014

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The Gruffalo BBC One Christmas special

The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's best-selling children's picture book, will debut on BBC One this Christmas.

The film's all-star voice cast features Robbie Coltrane as the Gruffalo; Helena Bonham Carter as the narrator; Rob Brydon as the Snake; James Corden as the Mouse; John Hurt as the Owl and Tom Wilkinson as the Fox.

Jay Hunt, Controller, BBC One, says: "It is a real privilege to bring a modern children's classic like The Gruffalo to BBC One. This captivating animation is a charming addition to the channel."

Produced by Magic Light Pictures, the 30-minute animation is currently in production.

Recently described by The Observer as a "modern classic", The Gruffalo tells the magical tale of a mouse who takes a walk through the woods in search of a nut. Encountering three predators who all wish to eat him – a fox, an owl and a snake – the plucky mouse has to use his wits to survive, creating an imaginary monster who then turns out to be only too real.

Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning, comments: "We are really excited to be able to bring The Gruffalo to life on screen. It will be a real treat at Christmas for the whole family."

Axel Scheffler's classic artwork is being brought to life with a unique mixture of model and CGI animation.

Michael Rose (Wallace & Gromit, Chicken Run) and Martin Pope (The Heart Of Me, Lawless Heart) are producing through Magic Light Pictures. The film is being directed by Jakob Schuh and Max Lang and animated at the award winning Studio Soi in Ludwigsburg, Germany.

The Gruffalo was commissioned by Ben Stephenson and Jay Hunt. Polly Hill is the Executive Producer for the BBC.

Julia Donaldson says: "I'm very excited by what I have seen of the animation, in particular by how faithful it is to the original story, while incorporating lots of imaginative touches to bring the deep dark wood alive."

Notes to Editors

Published by Macmillan Children's Books, The Gruffalo celebrates its tenth anniversary this year with over four million copies sold worldwide.

RN

Information for viewers

More content about The Gruffalo will be posted, as transmission approaches, on this page:
www.bbc.co.uk/tv/comingup/gruffalo/

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