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Gillian Anderson and Richard E Grant lead cast of Aardman’s Netflix musical, Robin Robin | Television

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Gillian Anderson and Richard E Grant will lead the cast of Aardman’s first collaboration with Netflix, Robin Robin, the Guardian can reveal. The feature-length tale of a robin who is adopted by a family of mice after its egg rolls into a rubbish dump will be the British animation studio’s first musical, and marks a departure from its longstanding relationship with the BBC. Previous Aardman hits include Wallace & Gromit, Shaun the Sheep and Flushed Away.

Anderson will voice the villain of the piece – Cat – while Grant will play Robin’s mentor, Magpie. Both will also provide their dulcet tones for their characters’ songs.

Animated antics … Robin Robin.

“Very few people have the ability to authentically purr like a cat,” writer/director Dan Ojari told the Guardian. “Fantastically, Gillian is one of those blessed few. Having Gillian purr and snarl at us was one of the most thrilling experiences of our lives thus far.”

His co-creator and director Mikey Please is equally pleased with Grant’s addition to the cast: “When Richard signed up, we had to pinch ourselves. We’d had pictures of Withnail pinned to our development wall throughout the writing and designing of his character and, having now worked with him, remain convinced that if he were to have a spirit animal, it would be a magpie.”

The pair are joined by the star of Utopia and Four Lions, Adeel Akhtar, as the mouse family patriarch, while young British actor Bronte Carmichael takes the lead, playing a Robin for the second time, albeit this time with feathers, after her performance as Madeline Robin in the 2018 live-action film Christopher Robin.

Robin Robin is in production at Aardman studios in Bristol, using their trademark stop-motion animation, and is due to arrive on screens in time for Christmas 2021.

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