The Highway Rat: TV adaptation for Christmas
The whole family are in for a treat this festive season, with the BBC announcing its latest TV adaptation of a much-loved children's book from the duo behind The Gruffalo and Stick Man
It's never too early to start planning your Christmas telly schedule. And if your kids – or perhaps you – are fans of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's books, you can start looking forward to a new animated adaptation hitting screens this December.
The BBC has announced a half-hour animation of The Highway Rat – the story of a greedy rat who steals food from other creatures who live beside the highway. His victims include everything from ants to horses, squirrels and rabbits, but (spoiler alert) it’s the rat’s sweet tooth that eventually lands him in trouble.
The animation will be voiced by an all-star British cast, lead by David Tennant as the Highway Rat, as well as Rob Brydon as the narrator, Nina Sosanya as the Duck, Tom Hollander as the Squirrel and Frances de la Tour as the Rabbit.
Julia Donaldson is the UK’s best-selling children’s author, with her books delighting millions of readers worldwide. She is, of course, most famous for The Gruffalo, which was also illustrated by Scheffler. The duo most recently released The Ugly Five – see what they had to say about the book and their newest characters in a recent Mumsnet Live video.
This year's TV adaptation follows the success of Stick Man, shown on the BBC last Christmas, which was hugely popular with audiences.
Michael Rose, co-founder of Magic Light Pictures, who are making the animation of The Highway Rat, said: “We’re delighted to be in production with our next Donaldson/Scheffler title for BBC One. Julia and Axel have given us another brilliant story to work from – a swashbuckling tale of bandits and biscuits for all the family to enjoy.”
Plenty of young fans (and parents, too) now have one more reason to get excited about Christmas. (Just 11 weeks to go!)