Russell Brand and Paula Patton have signed on for “Four Kids and It,” and will star alongside the previously cast Matthew Goode (“The Crown”) in the family adventure movie. Michael Caine is already on board to voice the It of the title.
The movie is an adaptation of Jacqueline Wilson’s children’s book, which in turn was inspired by E. Nesbit’s 1902 novel “Five Children and It.” It follows four kids who are horrified to learn that their beach vacation is in fact a bonding trip with their potential future step-siblings. The kids then accidentally stumble upon a Psammead, a magical, grumpy and sandy creature, in this case called It, who can grant them one wish a day.
Brand will play the oddball villain Tristan, who is bent on capturing It. Bill Nighy was previously cast in the role, but has been replaced by comedian and actor Brand, whose film credits include “Get Him to the Greek.” Patton, who was in “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” will play workaholic American mum Alice.
The teenage kids in the picture are played by Ashley Aufderheide (“Going in Style”) and Teddie Malleson-Allen (“Swallows and Amazons”). Billy Jenkins (“The Crown”) and theatrical performer Ellie-Mae Siame play their younger siblings.
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Andy De Emmony (“Father Ted”) is helming the movie. Principal photography got underway in Ireland this week. It is produced by Dan Films’ Julie Baines and Kindle Entertainment’s Anne Brogan from Simon Lewis’ screenplay. Paul Donovan of the Irish production company Deadpan Pictures and Dan Films’ Jonathan Taylor are co-producers.
“From the moment we first read Jacqueline Wilson’s novel, a magical story combining a comic truthfulness about contemporary family life with the timeless wish fulfillment of E. Nesbit’s classic tale, we knew it was a compelling mix for audiences both young and old,” said Baines and Brogan in a statement. “We are thrilled to have a stellar cast bring this treasured story to life.”
13 Films is handling worldwide distribution rights for the film. The film is being fully financed by Dr. Jwanwat Ahriyavraromp of T&B Media Global.