Hugh Grant has joined the cast of the much anticipated sequel to Paddington. The family movie, which will be released in November 2017, will also star Brendan Gleeson.
The film franchise is based on Michael Bond's Paddington book series, and follows the adventures of the marmalade-loving bear who travels to London from Peru in search of a home.
Hugh, 56 - who is dad to four children, Tabitha, four, Felix, two, John, three and a nine-month-old daughter - will take on the role of actor Phoenix Buchanan, while Harry Potter star Gleeson will play "Knuckles" McGinty, described as a "notorious safe-cracker and legendary strongman who becomes an unexpected new ally for Paddington".
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Hugh Grant has joined the cast of the much anticipated sequel to Paddington
Paddington director Paul King and producer David Heyman, who previously worked on the Harry Potter films, will be back taking helm over the movie.
Speaking about the new cast additions, King said: "It has been 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. Together, I hope we can make a film worthy of this most exceptional of bears."
The family movie, which will be released in November 2017, will also star Brendan Gleeson
Heyman added: "I am thrilled to be back in the warm embrace of Paddington Bear, again under the inspired direction of Paul King. And I'm delighted to welcome Hugh and Brendan to our exceptional cast."
Paddington will also feature Ben Whishaw as the voice of the Peruvian bear. Other original cast members include Sally Hawkins and Hugh Bonneville as the Browns and Julie Walters as Mrs Bird.
The second instalment has officially begun production with a release date set for next year. A third film is also in the pipeline, it has been confirmed.