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From Pingu to Paddington

19 Jul

© Heyday Films/Studio Canal

No, not the cute plasticene penguin, but the one from Nathan Barley. Yes, Ben Whishaw has been confirmed to play the voice of Paddington Bear in Boosh director, Paul King’s new film about the bear from darkest Peru.

Wishaw has replaced Colin Firth in the main role, who left the film in June after saying he did not have the right voice for the character. Producer David Heyman said at the time that Paddington needed “a slightly more open, and younger, voice”.

Heyman said Firth had sensed early on in the production his voice did not suit the bear. “He was saying, ‘Are you sure I’m right?’ He was way ahead of us – Colin was brilliant, but his voice was, ultimately, too mature.”

After hearing Whishaw audition for the role, Paul King said he, “Slowly found myself hearing his voice when I was thinking about Paddington…he breathes and he speaks and he sounds like Paddington.”

Wishaw joins an all start cast that includes Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent, Peter Capaldi and Nicole Kidman. The film is set for release on 28th November.

For more information about the film check out the movie’s Facebook page.


Deepest Darkest Paddington Bear

19 Jun

© Studio Canal

The team behind the new Paddington Bear movie, currently in production and directed by Paul King (Mighty Boosh, Bunny & The Bull), have released an image of the cuddly bear from the film – only he’s not so cuddly.

In fact, some people think that he looks rather ominous. So much so that it’s become a meme called #CreepyPaddington, with people creating horror-themed images featuring the bear. Here, below right, is one of them – but to see a whole to more click on this.

© Studio Canal

It sounds like the producers of the Paddington Bear movie have another challenge on their hands too: the voice of Paddington, Colin Firth, has left the project 6 months before its release. So far there appears to be no replacement confirmed. We’ve got a few ideas for who we’d like to hear voicing the bear from deepest darkest Peru…

Here’s the latest trailer from the movie, which was released last week; the film itself should be out before Christmas:



5 Mar

© Studio Canal

The teaser trailer for Paul King‘s second feature film, Paddington, has been released.

Based on the ever popular books by Michael Bond, the long-gestating film tells the tale of an impeccably polite, marmalade loving bear from Peru who arrives at Paddington station and is taken in by the Brown family.

It features Colin Firth as the voice of the titular fuzzy one, alongside an interstellar who’s-who of British acting talent.

Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Jim Broadbent, Julie Walters and Peter Capaldi head up the cast, which also features Nicole Kidman and a couple of TVO regulars in cameo roles.

Rufus Jones and James Bachman are set to appear as dastardly geographers, and we wouldn’t put it past King sneaking in a few other recurring collaborators too.

Produced by the man behind the Harry Potter franchise, David Heyman, you can expect this one to go intersellar on release in November.  The first teaser, can, as promised, be seen below.

TVO’s Review Of The Year 2013: Part Four

4 Jan

Hello and a warm welcome to the final part of our Review of 2013. Although October to December may feel like it only just happened, prepare to be amazed by how much you’ve forgotten. We were, but then we’re getting on a  bit.

So here are the best bits from the fourth quarter of the year – cherry-picked from news stories about both our regulars and a few new faces too. Enjoy.


October was the month that Booshmania returned.  Just as the fantastic Behind the Boosh exhibition started its run at Proud Camden, showcasing the history of that most Mighty of comedic troops via the majesty of Dave Brown‘s photography, the boys were back in town.  Or rather, on the pier, as The Mighty Boosh went from the Soho Theatre to Tenacious D’s Festival Supreme in LA. A final (chaotic) UK warm-up show and a further run through at The Comedy Store, almost halted by a Visa saga, paved the way for a live performance that turned out to be one of the Festival’s highlights. Fan forums and social media platforms were buzzing with photos, footage and reviews of the show.

Another announcement that got us more than a bit over-excited in October was the news that Ben Wheatley is to direct the first 2 episodes of the next series of Doctor Who, starring the new Time Lord, Peter Capaldi. How good is that!?  We’re itching to see what happens when you combine one of the UK’s finest directors with its biggest export, now in the capable hands of an Oscar-winning acting legend to boot.  You can see the moment Capaldi became the Doctor in the 2013 Xmas special below…

More telly stuff, with the launch of Matt Berry’s new series, Toast Of London.  We’d been itching to see it since the pilot back in 2012, and it did not disappoint…

Elsewhere, Richard Ayoade established himself as a permanent fixture on prime time panel shows with a stint as team captain on Was It Something I Said? on Channel 4. Ayoade’s intellectual sparring with host David Mitchell certainly made our Sunday evenings feel a bit more highbrow!

What else?  Well, in movie news, there was an update on the cast for Paul King‘s long-awaited Paddington Bear feature film, which included mention of Rufus Jones and James Bachman. To end the month, TVO artists offered us a veritable smorgasbord of comedy options for Halloween night’s out, with special spooky performances from Colin Hoult and Richard Sandling.  And we were sad to lose the talented comedy actor Felix Dexter, who died at the too-young age of 52. He left behind an incredible legacy of great TV performances on shows like Bellamy’s PeopleAbsolutely Fabulous, The Fast ShowKnowing Me Knowing You… With Alan Partridge, Mongrels and Alexei Sayle’s Merry Go Round to name but a few. He will be much misse, and would typically hate all this fuss about him, so let’s remember him with one of his silliest moments – dancing for Sport Relief alongside Rhys Thomas and Lucy Montgomery.  What a dude.

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Onions In Peru… More Paddington Castings Revealed

8 Oct

© Screened

We’ve been getting a bit excited about the forthcoming Paddington Bear movie. Partly driven by our love of all things Paul King-directed, and partly driven by our 70s and 80s childhoods, the film about the bear from deepest, darkest Peru can’t come soon enough.

So far we’ve had confirmation of the identity of the lead cast members; today we received news that there may be some other TVO connections amongst the cast! Rufus Jones has been confirmed as “a dastardly geographer”, and  James Bachman‘s name has also been mentioned in connection with the movie.

As soon as we hear any more about the film we’ll be sure to pass on the news. Rumour has it that the script is a real corker, so watch this space for updates…

Paddington Cast Confirmed

13 Sep

© Studio Canal

It’s four years since we first heard about Paul King’s movie adaptation of Paddington Bear (blimey) - and finally the cast has been confirmed! 

Previously we’ve mentioned that Hugh Bonneville will play Mr Brown. It’s now been announced that  Colin Firth will be the voice of Paddington Bear and Sally Hawkins (the Mum in Submarine, fact fans) will play Mrs Brown. Julie Walters will be Mrs Bird the housekeeper, and Jim Broadbent will play Mr Gruber, Paddington’s friend and the owner of the antiques shop. Nicole Kidman plays the part of an evil taxidermist determined to wreak her revenge.

Paddington will be produced by David Heyman, who produced of all eight of the Harry Potter films (and directed by King, of course!).

So far so exciting! However, there’s still a fair wait ahead: the film will open in the UK November 28th, 2014 and will be released wide in North America in the first quarter of 2015.  We’ll let you know as and when we hear anything further.

Latest On Paddington Bear

9 Jun


Since way back when we’ve been bringing you occasional updates about Paul King‘s feature-legth adaptation of Paddingon Bear.

The director of The Mighty Boosh and Bunny & The Bull has been associated with the project for some time, and now news is emerging that the two lead roles have been filled. Hugh Laurie is rumoured to be in line for the voice of (animated) Paddington, while Downton Abbey star, Hugh Bonneville, is in negotiations to play the live-action role of Henry Brown, the father figure in Paddington’s adopted family.

Brilliant though Laurie is, for those of us  brought up on a diet of Paddington Bear cartoons in the 1970′s, we’ll miss the familiar voice of Charlie Adler as the titular bear!

Filming is due to begin this Autumn, so it sounds like production of the film is finally off the ground. It remains to be seen whether King will be bringing any of his Boosh or Bunny & the Bull buddies into the project, but we’ll be keeping our eyes and ears open on your behalf for any further reports.

Paddington’s Poster!

22 Jun

© Studio Canal

The first poster for Paddington – the second feature film from director Paul King – has been released today.

We’ve been desperate to see this project ever since Paul mentioned it as a possibility before The Velvet Onion was more than a twinkle in our editor’s eye, and after initial rumours of his attachment turned into a confirmation back in April 2010, things went quiet on the Peruvian front for over two years.

Now after recent quotes from producer David Heyman made headlines across movie blogs and social networks, comes the theatrical teaser poster you can see here.

Heyman’s presence is the one which is being shouted about – perhaps understandably, as a family film from the makers of Harry Potter will always sound better than one from the people who brought you Old Gregg and The Crack Fox – but it’s King’s contribution that is whetting our appetites and we can’t wait to see what he does with the iconic character.

Wait we must. Paddington is released in 2014.  In the meantime, check out Paul’s sublime first film, Bunny And The Bull on dvd and blu-ray via The Velvet Onion Amazon Store.

Editors Note: Thanks to awesome website Bleeding Cool for alerting us about this one!

Paddington Coming Soon?

10 May

© Paddington & Co. Ltd.

It usually takes a slow news day for the media to start digging up stories announced a long time ago, but sometimes, it’s because said story has stepped up a gear.

The planned live-action/cgi remake of Paddington Bear – which was attached to TVO’s very own Paul King back in April 2010 - has cropped up today on popular media website DigitalSpy, with quotes attributed to its producer, David Heyman.

The man behind the Harry Potter films is said to have described the film as “a modern take” on the character, stating: “Paddington Bear is a universally loved character, treasured for his optimism, his sense of fair play, and his perfect manners – and of course for his unintentional talent for comic chaos.  Michael Bond’s books offer such wit and wonder, and I am so delighted at this chance to bring Paddington to the big screen.”

When the film was first attached to Paul, he told the Herald Sun: “It’s not like I’ll be going, ‘OK, he’s gonna be a hip hop bear, he’s gonna get into street fights, he’s gonna pack a knife’. There’s none of that business. He likes marmalade sandwiches and pottering in the garden and has a green front door. I’ll be a traditionalist.”

Those of who you have watched King’s stunning theatrical debut Bunny And The Bull will no doubt remember the Paddington vibe of some of its early scenes, so we remain incredibly hopeful that he is able to do this classic character justice.  More news as it peels…


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