Olivia Colman and Matt Smith sign up for Superworm

Sherna Noah, PA Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Olivia Colman and Matt Smith will lead the voice cast in the BBC’s next animated Christmas production – Superworm.

The half-hour film will be the latest adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s popular books, following on from the likes of The Gruffalo, The Highway Rat and most recently, Zog And The Flying Doctors.

Oscar-winner Colman, 47, who is currently starring as the Queen in The Crown, will narrate the story.

Smith, 38, who played the Duke of Edinburgh in previous series of The Crown, will voice Superworm, the “hero with a difference”.

Superworm book cover (Julia Donaldson/Axel Scheffler/PA)
Superworm book cover (Julia Donaldson/Axel Scheffler/PA)

Colman said: “This is such a lovely project to be involved with.

“When reading the script, and imagining all those goings on at the end of the garden, I could really get a feel for the pure fun and joy that the film will bring.

“I’ve always loved these charming productions at Christmas and I’m delighted to be voicing the narrator.”

Smith said: “I’m delighted to play the part of Superworm and join such a fabulous cast of actors, artists and storytellers. What fun to be part of the BBC’s Christmas line up in this great children’s tale.”

Matt Smith on the red carpet
Matt Smith on the red carpet (Ian West/PA)

Martin Pope, co-founder of Magic Light Pictures, which makes the films, said Superworm is a “lovely” comedy.

“Superworm’s a brilliant central character, who has great friends who will ultimately triumph over the wonderfully entertaining villain”, he said.

Superworm will air on BBC One and BBC iPlayer at Christmas.

The voice cast will also include Sex Education actress Patricia Allison, as Butterfly, and Rob Brydon as the Crow.

Zog And The Flying Doctors aired on Christmas Day 2020 and featured the voices of Sir Lenny Henry and Brydon.

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