Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne is to voice a new train in upcoming Thomas & Friends special, Sodor’s Legend of the Lost Treasure, which is set for release on DVD this autumn.
The 60-minute movie will see Thomas head to a new part of Sodor and on a curious quest that introduces a host of new characters inlcuding new engine Ryan (Eddie Redmayne), Sailor John (John Hurt) and Skiff the sail boat (Jamie Campbell Bower).
“I grew up loving to watch Thomas and his pals getting caught up in unexpected and mischievous adventures," said Redmayne.
"I jumped at the opportunity to get involved and what fun it was. I have never voiced an animated character before, and I had a complete blast.”
John Hurt added: "I remember watching Thomas the Tank Engine with my children when they were young and I'm delighted that it continues to appeal to each successive generation. I enjoy working vocally and have voiced many animated characters. Sailor John was something of a departure from what I usually do and a lot of fun to play as you can see from the pictures."
Voice of Skiff, Jamie Campbell Bower, said: “I’m thrilled to be a part of this project. I grew up with Thomas & Friends so it’s been really exciting to be able to get involved in this new feature special and voice the character of Skiff. It is a great show to be involved in and incredibly fun to record. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my first animation and I look forward to everyone seeing the end result.”
2015 sees Thomas & Friends celebrates 70 years with a year-long programme of friendship-themed activity around the world.
“Sodor’s Legend of the Lost Treasure is an epic story of friendship, betrayal and, ultimately, loyalty where Thomas is at the centre of the action," said Christopher Keenan, VP global content and executive producer, Hit Entertainment.
"We’re introducing a whole host of exciting new characters which is one of the great joys of writing for Thomas & Friends.
“We have introduced a wide variety of friends over the years and look forward to the audience’s reaction to these unique characters."