Channel 4 has caught a big one with its animated version of Michael Rosen’s much loved story We’re Going on a Bear Hunt – Olivia Colman is joining the cast of voices.
The Broadchurch and Night Manager star will play the Mum in the story of a family’s adventure in search of a bear. She will be joined by Call the Midwife star Pam Ferris as the Grandma and Harry Potter actor Mark Williams as the Dad who leads the hunt.
Rosen himself will play the role of the bear in the animation which is due to air this Christmas.
Based on the hit bedtime book written by Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury, the half-hour show is being produced by the makers of the hugely-popular The Snowman and The Snowdog animation.
We’re Going on a Bear Hunt follows the intrepid adventures of siblings Stan, Katie, Rosie, Max the baby and Rufus the dog, who decide one day to go on an adventure in search of bears.
The story contains the refrain familiar to many children: “We’re going on a bear hunt. We’re going to catch a big one. What a beautiful day! We’re not scared.”
Coming up against a host of obstacles the family ventures through whirling snowstorms, thick oozing mud and dark forests on their ambitious quest. But when Rosie and Rufus become detached from the rest of the party it looks like bear-hunting might not be such fun after all…
Colman said: ‘What appealed to me about the story is the bond the family have – they care for, and look after, each other. Another wonderful aspect of the story is that it’s kids enjoying a natural adventure with their imaginations, fresh air and the wilderness. I love that they commit to their adventure… I would like to go with them!”
Piers Wenger, Head of Drama for Channel 4 added: “We’re delighted to welcome Olivia, Mark and Pam on board this fantastic family adventure, and Michael playing the bear is an inspired touch. It’s a brilliant cast for a brilliant, classic story; I can’t wait for Christmas.”
Ben has worked as a professional journalist specialising in TV and the arts for nearly twenty years writing for Stage newspaper, Sunday Mirror and the Sunday Times, The Guardian, Evening Standard, Broadcast, Independent and the New Statesman where he wrote a column.