Bron Animation has added Maya Rudolph, Terry Crews, Martin Short, Jane Krakowski and Sean Cullen to the cast of its adaptation of The Willoughbys, based on the popular children’s book by Newbery Award winning author Lois Lowry. Rudolph will be the voice of Nanny, who looks after the Willoughby children. Crews is voicing the candy mogul, Commandor Melanoff, and Short & Krakowski give voice to Father and Mother Willoughby, parents so in love with each other they forget they even have children. Cullen voices the twin boys Barnaby A and B. They join previously announced Ricky Gervais, who will serve as the film’s narrator.
Published in 2010, the story follows the four Willoughby children – Tim, Jane and the twins, Barnaby A and B. When abandoned by their selfish parents, they must embark on a wild adventure through the modern world, colliding with a cat, an orphan, a nanny and a candy mogul, to reunite with the “family they were born into,” only to discover along the way the value of love in the “family they choose.”
The Willoughbys is being written and directed by Kris Pearn with Cory Evans co-directing, and is currently in pre-production at Bron’s studio in Burnaby, BC. Bron’s Brenda Gilbert, Aaron L. Gilbert and Luke Carroll are producing. Gervais serves as an executive producer on the project, alongside Jason Cloth of Creative Wealth Media.
Pearn has come to Bron from a career making films at Sony, Dreamworks, Lucas/Disney and Aardman with credits including: Head of Story on Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, co-director of Cloudy 2, Story Supervisor on Arthur Christmas, as well as credits on Surf’s Up, Shawn the Sheep, Home and Pirates: Band of Misfits. He has been nominated twice for an Annie Award for his work on Open Season and Arthur Christmas.