Ewan McGregor, Obi-Wan Kenobi himself, is busy doing lots of voice work these days. In addition to Blue Sky's ROBOTS and Disney's upcoming GNOMEO AND JULIET, the Scottish actor has just been signed to voice the title character in Vanguard Animation's CG-animated feature, VALIANT. The animated comedy tells the story of a lowly wood pigeon named Valiant, who overcomes his small size to become a hero in Great Britain's Royal Air Force Homing Pigeon Service during World War II. The RHPS advanced the Allied cause by flying vital messages about enemy movements across the English Channel, while evading brutal attacks by the enemy's Falcon brigade.
Academy Award winner Sir Ben Kingsley will voice Gen. Keyserlingk, the feared German falcon leader. Other actors lending their voices include Oscar winner Jim Broadbent (MOULIN ROUGE), Rupert Everett (MY BEST FRIEND'S WEDDING), Hugh Laurie (the STUART LITTLES), John Hurt (ELEPHANT MAN), and Ricky Gervais (star of the BBC hit series THE OFFICE).
VALIANT, which will be wrap in December 2004, is currently in production, with a staff of 95, at Vanguard Animation's recently completed CG studio built at the legendary Ealing Studios in London, as well as continuing at its Los Angeles and New York offices. Disney is distributing the picture in North America, and Odyssey Entertainment in the U.K. is handling international distribution. Disney additionally holds worldwide merchandising, soundtrack and video game rights. Vanguard Animation is a division of Vanguard Films. IDT Corporation, a subsidiary of IDT Entertainment Inc., a multinational carrier, telephone and technology company, has a significant investment in Vanguard Animation.
The producer is John H. Williams (the SHREKS) for Vanguard Animation (www.vanguardanimation.com). Exec producers are Barnaby Thompson for Ealing Studios, Ralph Kamp for Odyssey Entertainment, Robert Jones for the U.K. Film Council, and Keith Evans for Baker Street Media Finance. Co-producers are Eric M. Bennett, Curtis Augspurger and Buckley Collum for Vanguard Animation. British character designer Gary Chapman is directing VALIANT.
VALIANT is a Vanguard Animation, Ealing Studios and U.K. Film Council Presentation in association with Odyssey Entertainment and Take Five Film Partnerships of a Vanguard Animation production.