The animated adaptation of Terry Pratchett’s Carnegie Medal-winning 2001 children’s book The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents has already commandeered a huge celebrity voice cast, but apparently there’s always room for more. Now Doctor Who’s David Tennant has joined the ranks, alongside Game of Thrones’ Emilia Clarke and House’s Hugh Laurie, among many others.
The Amazing Maurice novel is a comedic adaptation of the tale of the Pied Piper, who legendarily led the rats out of the town of Hamelin with his magic pipe, only to lead the town’s children away as well after the townsfolk failed to compensate him for his work. Pratchett’s book, which is part of his beloved Discworld series, is vastly different, featuring a sentient cat named Maurice, a pack of equally sentient rats, and a boy named Keith as they try to trick the town of Bad Blintz into hiring Keith to lead a newfound “rat infestation” away. Instead, they run into more malicious ratcatchers, a rat king with psychic powers, and more.
Besides starring in Amazon’s adaptation of Pratchett and Neil Gaiman’s novel Good Omens, Tennant actually voiced the rat Dangerous Beans in a 2003 radio adaptation of The Amazing Maurice, so it’s pretty reasonable to suspect he’ll be reprising the role. Meanwhile, we know Hugh Laurie will voice Maurice, with Tenet’s Himesh Patel as the boy Keith, Downton Abbey’s Hugh Bonneville as the mayor of Bad Blintz, Emilia Clarke as the mayor’s daughter Malicia, and The Girl With All the Gifts’ Gemma Arterton as the rat Peaches. Wonder Woman’s David Thewlis also stars as a character named Boss Man, who I believe is one of the ratcatchers but can’t be entirely sure, given that I haven’t read the book. It’s very clear I need to correct this.
Right now, The Amazing Maurice is scheduled to debut in 2022.