Although “Paddington” was just a mild charming movie, it did pretty solid numbers globally to merit a sequel. Most of the creative team behind and in front of the camera are back for “Paddington 2”, and a teaser is now up. This caught me a bit by surprise, as I had no idea they were this far along already. Apart from the titular bear, we’re introduced to new characters played by Hugh Grant and Brendan Gleeson, who both look like they’re having a lot of fun. Let’s hope the movie itself is fun. I don’t find the gags here particularly funny, but maybe they’re saving the better bits. Maybe.
Here’s the official synopsis: “The sequel to the worldwide hit family film finds Paddington happily settled with the Brown family in Windsor Gardens, where he has become a popular member of the community, spreading joy and marmalade wherever he goes. While searching for the perfect present for his beloved Aunt Lucy’s hundredth birthday, Paddington spots a unique pop-up book in Mr. Gruber’s antique shop, and embarks upon a series of odd jobs to buy it. But when the book is stolen, it’s up to Paddington and the Browns to unmask the thief…
Hugh Grant plays Windsor Gardens’ local celebrity, Phoenix Buchanan, a vain, charming acting legend whose star has fallen somewhat in recent years. Brendan Gleeson plays “Knuckles” McGinty, a notorious safe-cracker and legendary strongman who becomes an unexpected new ally for Paddington. The rest of the cast includes Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent, Peter Capaldi, Madeleine Harris and Samuel Joslin, with Ben Whishaw as the voice of Paddington, and Imelda Staunton as Aunt Lucy.
“Paddington 2” is directed by Paul King and written by King and Simon Farnaby. It premieres 10th November in the UK, and 12th January 2018 in the US.