The Clangers remake has bagged some formidable star quality in the form of actor, comedian and presenter Michael Palin who is to narrate the return of the children’s series.
Best known for his travel documentaries and as a member of comedy troupe Monty Python, Palin said, “The world of the Clangers is delightful and irresistible. It’s a real pleasure and a great privilege to be a part of its return to television.”
The remake – which was first announced last October – is a co-production between the BBC and the original producers Smallfilms, with series creator Peter Firmin involved in the new project, as well as Daniel Postgate, son of Firmin’s collaborator the late Oliver Postgate who ran Smallfilms.
The two will serve as executive producers with Firmin involved in the design process and Postgate penning story lines and scripts. Palin will take over presenting duties from Postgate Sr who narrated the original series which ran from 1969 to 1972.
“Michael Palin was my first and favourite choice, so of course I’m absolutely delighted,” said Daniel Postgate. “Among other things, he’s been a warm and charming guide for us all in his extensive travels around this world, so it seems wonderfully appropriate that he should pack his bags once more, go off across the starry expanse of space and do the same for the world of the Clangers.”
Peter Firmin added: “As an old stick-in-the-mud I don’t often change my mind and from the very beginning I wished and hoped that Michael Palin would agree to be our narrator. Once in a blue moon wishes come true. This is once in a blue moon. I hope Michael enjoys his voyage to our little Blue Planet.”
Centred on the Clangers family, the series followed the pink, long-nosed puppets who lived in space on a planet peppered with holes topped with metal dustbin lids. These flip open with a clang to reveal their homes of caves and tunnels.
The 2015 remake is expected to see the return of fan favourites Major, Mother, Small (a boy), Tiny (a girl) and Granny, along with the Sky Moos, the Glow Buzzers, the Soup Dragon, who provides green soup from the soup wells and the Iron Chicken, whose favourite food is nuts and bolts.
The 52 eleven-minute episodes will use Oliver Postgate’s technique of stop frame animation and resemble the original, with the producers expected to add in some up-to-date animation expertise.