Claire Foy, Benedict Cumberbatch, Adjoa Andoh, Miriam Margolyes, Maggie Steed, Zawe Ashton, and Charlie Higson have lent their voices to the special animated adaptation of Judith Kerr’s beloved children’s book, “Mog’s Christmas.” The project is a collaboration between Channel 4 and Universal Pictures Content Group, with Lupus Films producing the hand-drawn animated special. This adaptation marks the 100th anniversary year of Judith Kerr’s birth and follows the success of the team’s previous collaboration on Channel 4’s Emmy award-winning adaptation of Kerr’s “The Tiger Who Came to Tea.”
Adjoa Andoh, known for her roles in “Bridgerton” and “Broadchurch,” leads the voice cast as the narrator. Claire Foy, acclaimed for her performances in “The Crown” and “A Very British Scandal,” portrays Mrs. Thomas, while Benedict Cumberbatch, renowned for his roles in “Sherlock” and “Doctor Strange,” takes on the role of Mr. Thomas. Miriam Margolyes, Maggie Steed, Zawe Ashton, and Charlie Higson also contribute their voices to various characters. Tacy Kneale, Judith Kerr’s daughter, provides the purrs and miaows for Mog, the lovable family cat, aiming to honor the memory of the original Mog.
Judith Kerr, the author and illustrator of the Mog series, based the stories on the adventures of her first family cat. The series began with “Mog the Forgetful Cat” in 1970 and has remained in print ever since. It has inspired 17 additional picture books, selling over four million copies worldwide and translated into 21 languages.
In “Mog’s Christmas,” the Thomas family, consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas and their children, Debbie and Nicky, is busy with Christmas preparations. With the arrival of two aunts and a jolly uncle, Mog feels somewhat neglected. When the family brings home a massive Christmas tree, Mog becomes frightened and seeks safety on the roof. Despite the family’s attempts to rescue her, Mog remains stranded. However, Mog experiences a magical night in the snow, culminating in a cat-themed Christmas dream. On Christmas day, hungry Mog hears the mention of breakfast and falls down the chimney, surprising and relieving the entire family. Finally, Mog has everyone’s attention, and a joyful Christmas is had by all.
Gwawr Lloyd, Drama Commissioning Editor at Channel 4, expresses delight in bringing Mog’s story to the screen, emphasising the star-studded cast that includes Claire Foy and Benedict Cumberbatch. Lupus Films’ co-founder, Ruth Fielding, highlights the cross-generational appeal of the festive and family-friendly tale and its significance as a literary classic. Juliet Matthews, Colour Publisher at HarperCollins Children’s Books, expresses pride in being the home of Judith Kerr’s books and the opportunity to introduce Mog to a new generation of children through the animated adaptation.
“Mog’s Christmas” was commissioned by Gwawr Lloyd and Caroline Hollick, Drama Commissioning Editor and Head of Drama at Channel 4, respectively, in association with Universal Pictures Content Group. The Lupus Films production, directed by Robin Shaw and written by Joanna Harrison, brings Judith Kerr’s vivid illustrations to life in their distinctive hand-drawn animated style. Universal Pictures Content Group will handle global distribution and marketing for the animated special, excluding Channel 4’s rights.
“Mog’s Christmas” is a Lupus Films production in association with Tabby Tales, HarperCollins Children’s Books, and Universal Pictures Content Group for Channel 4 Television.