UK animation firm Aniventure has set Peter Dinklage (Game Of Thrones) and Lilly Singh (A Little Late With Lilly Singh) for the lead voice roles of Hitpig and Pickles, respectively, in animated movie Hitpig.
Also joining the voice cast are Rainn Wilson (The Office), RuPaul (RuPaul’s Drag Race), Hannah Gadsby (Nanette) and Dany Boon (Raid: Special Unit).
Pic is co-directed by Cinzia Angelini, storyboard artist on Minions and Despicable Me 3, and Maurizio Parimbelli, animator on Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix. Producers are Adam Nagle (Riverdance: The Animated Adventure) and Dave Rosenbaum (The Secret Life of Pets).
Set in a futuristic world, the film follows a grizzled porcine bounty hunter who accepts his next hit: Pickles (Singh), a naive, ebullient elephant who has escaped the clutches of an evil trillionaire. Though Hitpig initially sets out to capture the perky pachyderm, the unlikely pair find themselves on an unexpected adventure criss-crossing the globe that brings out the best in both of them.
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The film is currently in production at Cinesite for delivery in early 2022.
Screenplay comes from Berkeley Breathed who is also character designer for the film. The American cartoonist, children’s book creator, director and screenwriter is best known for creating 1980s cartoon-comic strip Bloom County featuring Opus the Penguin. The characters Hitpig and Pickles are rooted in Berkeley’s picture book Pete & Pickles.
“Peter will bring equal parts a huge heart and fantastic humour to his character,” said Angelini. “There is no one funnier than Lilly,” added Parimbelli, “but she’ll also bring a warmth and loving side to Pickles.”
Commenting on the project’s cast and his experience working with the Aniventure team, Berkeley said: “When Peter and Lilly agreed to voice our lead characters, it was one of those deliciously rare voila moments for a writer and artist when the final perfect ingredients are added to one’s cooked-up soufflé of imagination. They’ll bring heartfelt, hilarious performances to our lead characters and deliver the message and theme I had intended when I conceived the story, the hope that unexpected connection can deliver in our disconnected lives. I’m in humbled awe of our entire crew and the endless reserves of ingenuity that they’re bringing to this movie.”
Aniventure, launched this fall with CAA representation, is also in the works on animated movies Riverdance: The Animated Adventure based on the stage show hit of the same name and Blazing Samurai, based on Mel Brooks’ classic Blazing Saddles and directed by Mark Koetsier (The Grinch) and overseen and produced by Rob Minkoff (The Lion King).
Riverdance: The Animated Adventure, Blazing Samurai and Hitpig are due to be delivered in 2020, 2021 and 2022, respectively.