Academy Award-winner Julia Roberts, Oprah Winfrey, John Cleese, Steve Buscemi, Cedric The Entertainer, Reba McEntire, Kathy Bates, Thomas Haden Church and Andre Benjamin (Andre 3000) have joined the voice cast in the upcoming live-action/photo real CG animated feature adaptation of E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web for producer Jordan Kerner and his Kerner Entertainment Banner. The film will be directed by Gary Winick (13 Going on 30) and is a Paramount Pictures, Walden Media and Nickelodeon Movies co-production. The feature is scheduled to begin production on January 31st in Melbourne, Australia.
Roberts will lend her vocals in the lead role of Charlotte A. Cavatica, a spider and heroine of the book who goes out of her way to save Wilbur the pig’s life by weaving miraculous words into her webs. Also joining as cast voices are: Oprah Winfrey as Gussy the barn’s maternal yet irreverent goose; John Cleese as Samuel the sheep; Steve Buscemi as the barn’s sardonic Rat Templeton. Also, Cedric The Entertainer will play opposite Oprah as the other Goose – Golly. Reba McEntire and Kathy Bates will voice the barn’s ironic cows Betsy and Bitsy, and Thomas Haden Church (Golden Globe Nominee in Sideways) will voice Brooks, one of two dimwitted crows opposite Andre Benjamin (Andre 3000) as Elwyn the other crow.
The critically acclaimed book Charlotte’s Web written by award-winning author E.B. White and illustrated by Garth Williams is the best selling children’s paperback of all time. To date the book has sold 45 Million copies worldwide and has been translated into 23 languages since published in 1952.
Gary Winick will direct the film starring Dakota Fanning as Fern from a screenplay by Susannah Grant and Karey Kirkpatrick.