Entertainment & Arts

Hugh Grant to star in Paddington sequel

Hugh Grant and Brendan Gleeson with Paddington 2 promotional image Image copyright PA/StudioCanal/Getty Images
Image caption Director Paul King said he "couldn't be more excited" about Grant and Gleeson's involvement

Hugh Grant and Brendan Gleeson are to join the cast of Paddington in a sequel to the 2014 box office hit.

Grant will play Phoenix Buchanan, "a vain, charming acting legend whose star has fallen somewhat in recent years".

Gleeson will be seen as "Knuckles" McGinty, "a notorious safe-cracker and legendary strongman who becomes an unexpected new ally for Paddington".

Ben Whishaw will again voice Michael Bond's ursine hero in Paddington 2, to be released in the UK in November 2017.

Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters and Jim Broadbent will also reprise their roles in director Paul King's sequel.

Image copyright StudioCanal
Image caption Samuel Joslin, Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins and Madeleine Harris starred in Paddington

King, who also directed the first film, which was both a critical and box office success, said it was "a complete joy to return to the world of Paddington".

"It was such a delight to see his first big-screen adventure embraced by audiences around the world, and I couldn't be more excited about Hugh and Brendan joining the cast to bring his next outing to life."

According to an official synopsis, the film will see Paddington on the trail of a thief who has stolen a cherished pop-up book from a local antique shop.

Grant was recently seen alongside Meryl Streep in Florence Foster Jenkins, while Gleeson will soon be seen opposite Michael Fassbender in Assassin's Creed.

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