The Amazing Maurice, a CGI animated feature co-production of Sky (U.K.), Ulysses Filmproduktion (Germany) and Cantilever Media (Ireland), has found the purr-fect voice stars! The movie, which was one of the selected projects at this year’s Cartoon Movie co-production forum, is inspired by the late Terry Pratchett’s 2001 book The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, the first title in his Discworld series written for children.
“The Amazing Maurice is a fantastic story from a legendary author, and I couldn’t think of a better tale to bring to life as an animated film for all the family,” said Sarah Wright, Director of Sky Cinema and Acquisitions at Sky U.K. & Ireland. “I’m excited to work with Ulysses Filmproduktion and Cantilever Media to bring this exclusive new movie to Sky Cinema audiences in 2022.”
Emely Christians, Producer and CEO of Ulysses Filmproduktion, added, “When I read The Amazing Maurice, I knew we had to turn this amazing novel into a film. The art and animation departments are working hard to recreate Terry Pratchett’s unique vision and I can’t wait to see this on screen!”
Hugh Laurie (Avenue 5) and Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) lead the cast as the antihero cat Maurice and Malicia, the mayor’s bookish daughter, respectively. Further, David Thewlis (Wonder Woman) is on board as Boss Man, Himesh Patel (Yesterday) as Keith, Gemma Arterton (The King’s Man) as Peaches and Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey) as The Mayor.
“I’m a huge fan of Sir Terry Pratchett so I would not be embarking on this project unless I felt we were bringing the film to life in a way that honours the book and will please its numerous fans around the world,” said Andrew Baker, Producer & CEO of Cantilever Media. “We have a great cast and great teams at the studios in Sheffield and Hamburg working to make this film special.”
The movie follows Maurice, a streetwise ginger cat who has the perfect money-making scam. He finds a kid who plays a pipe, and he also befriends his very own horde of strangely educated, talking rats – so Maurice can no longer think of them as ‘lunch’. When Maurice and the rodents reach the stricken town of Bad Blintz, they meet a bookworm, Malicia. Their little con soon goes down the drain as something very bad is waiting for them in the cellars…
Cantilever Producer Robert Chandler noted, “The trick with The Amazing Maurice is getting the balance right. Terry Pratchett is a brilliant author, who was not afraid to explore dark places and have fun getting there. That’s the tone of our film.”
The Amazing Maurice, a Sky original, is co-produced by Sky, Ulysses Filmproduktion and Cantilever Media, with animation studios Studio Rakete (Hamburg) and Red Star Animation (Sheffield). The film has the full support of the Terry Pratchett estate and is produced in association with Narrativia. Producers are Julia Stuart (Sky), Emely Christians (Ulysses), Andrew Baker and Robert Chandler (Cantilever Media) and Rob Wilkins (Narrativia). The film is directed by Toby Genkel, co-director is Florian Westermann.
“Bringing Maurice’s story to life was such a joy for Terry and I’m delighted that the teams at Sky, Ulysses Filmproduktion and Cantilever Media are honouring his vision with such reverence and respect,” said Rob Wilkins, Producer & Managing Director, Narrativia.
Telepool, which has acquired distribution rights for German-speaking territories, will handle worldwide rights to The Amazing Maurice through its sales arm, Globalscreen.