Paddington trail to mark new movie
5:31pm Tuesday 22nd July 2014 in © Press Association 2014
Dozens of figures of Paddington are to invade London to celebrate the launch of a new movie starring the bear.
Artists, designers and celebrities will decorate the three and a half feet high figures which will be placed at landmarks and notable locations in the city, including Paddington Station where the fictional creature is found by the Brown family who take him in.
The Paddington Trail is to launch in October and eventually the statues will be auctioned to raise money for charities including the NSPCC.
The Paddington film - which features Ben Whishaw as the furry character who arrives in London from Peru - opens in UK cinemas on November 28.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "As a long-time fan of Paddington Bear I'm delighted that this world-famous, marmalade-loving, duffle-coat wearing, polite but notoriously accident-prone bear will be celebrated by Londoners, and visitors to our great city, with the launch of this fantastic trail."
Karen Jankel, the daughter of author Michael Bond who created the Paddington stories, said: "When my father Michael Bond first wrote about Paddington many years ago he could never have imagined that one day he would see life-sized versions of his creation all over London.
"It is a huge honour for a small bear and it will be very exciting to see how all the different artists choose to interpret him," added Ms Jankel, who is the managing director of Paddington And Company.
The film also features stars such as Hugh Bonneville, Nicole Kidman, Julie Walters, Peter Capaldi and Jim Broadbent.
Colin Firth, who had originally been due to portray the character, pulled out when it was felt his voice did not quite fit.