Ben Whishaw Paddington
Ben Whishaw is the voice of Paddington

Ben Whishaw, known for his leading role in the TV series The Hour and the new high tech geek Q in the recent bond film has been cast as the new voice of Paddington for the upcoming film.

Oscar-winner Colin Firth was to voice the bear but left the film’s production in June saying he did not have the right voice for the character. It was general thought that his mature voice somehow did now fit their young inquisitive bear.

The Daily Mail was told by Paddington Producer David Heyman that perhaps the bear needed “a slightly more open, and younger, voice”.

We understand that Ben was a little reluctant at first as all he knew about Paddinton was he wore a duffle coat and a hat! We are fans of 33 year old Ben Whisham and believe the many roles he has played show him to be truly talented. We also think this feels like a much better fit for the film’s bear.

Ben joins the others stars of the film; Downton Abbey’s Hugh Bonneville and Julie Walters as Mr and Mrs Brown – the marmalade-loving bear’s adopted parents, new Doctor Who Pater Capaldi as Mr Curry – The Browns’ bad-tempered next-door neighbour, plus Nicole Kidman – an evil taxidermist named Millicent.

Paddington is due to be released first in the UK on November 28, Australia December 11, New Zealand December 18 and US / Canada December 25, 2014.

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Colin Davies

The editor of Film Review Online