EXCLUSIVE: Fox Searchlight today confirmed the news that Deadline previously broke about Domhnall Gleeson and Margot Robbie being set to star in Simon Curtis’ Goodbye Christopher Robin. Gleeson, who scared the bejeezus out of kids worldwide as the evil General Hux in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, will play Winnie the Pooh creator A.A. Milne. Robbie plays his wife Daphne. Curtis (My Week with Marilyn) directs with the script written by Frank Cottrell Boyce (Millions) and Simon Vaughan (War and Peace). Damian Jones (Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie) and Steve Christian (Belle) will serve as producers.
Pathe developed the project, which will go through Jones’ first-look production pact with Fox Searchlight, news of which Deadline broke a few weeks ago. This is shaping up nicely for Jones, who has been on a roll of late with local hits Dad’s Army and The Lady in the Van as well as the feature adaptation of classic comedy Brit TV series Absolutely Fabulous, which Fox Searchlight will distribute and co-finance with BBC Films.
“I am delighted to be collaborating with Frank Cottrell Boyce to tell the remarkable and poignant story of the family behind the creation of Winnie the Pooh,” said Simon Curtis. “We are assembling a wonderful cast, headed by two actors I am longing to work with – Domhnall Gleeson and Margot Robbie,” says Curtis.
The story gives a glimpse into the relationship between beloved children’s author A. A. Milne and his son Christopher Robin, whose toys inspired the magical world of Winnie the Pooh. Along with his mother Daphne, and his nanny Olive, Christopher Robin and his family are swept up in the international success of the books. The enchanting tales brought hope and comfort to England after the First World War. But with the eyes of the world on Christopher Robin, the film will look at what the cost might be to the family?
The film will be overseen by Fox Searchlight co-heads of production David Greenbaum and Matthew Greenfield, and director of production & acquisitions Katie Goodson-Thomas. Gleeson is repped by The Agency and Paradigm and Robbie is repped by CAA, Management 360, Aran Michael Management and attorney Jeff Bernstein.
Winnie the Pooh, also called Pooh Bear, has become one of the most iconic characters in children’s literature. Disney famously adapted the character into a popular animated character, first appearing in the 1966 Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree.