Benedict Cumberbatch to Voice The Grinch, Trey Parker the Despicable Me 3 Villain
During Universal Pictures’ CinemaCon presentation in Las Vegas today, Illumination Entertainment founder and CEO Chris Meledandri announced new castings for two of 2017’s most-highly anticipated films. In addition, Meledandri announced the first in-theater Minions short film, Mower Minions, which will debut with Illumination’s The Secret Life of Pets, opening in theaters July 8, 2016.
Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game, upcoming Doctor Strange) voices the title role of The Grinch in the newly-imagined version of the enduring holiday classic. Directed by Pete Candeland and Yarrow Cheney, and adapted from Dr. Seuss’ book by Michael LeSieur, the animated film will be produced by Illumination’s Chris Meledandri, Janet Healy and Scott Mosier, and executive produced by Audrey Geisel and Chris Renaud. Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas will be released on November 10, 2017.
Emmy, Tony and Grammy Award winner Trey Parker, co-creator of Comedy Central’s global phenomenon South Park and the Broadway smash “The Book of Mormon,” has joined Despicable Me 3 to voice the role of villain Balthazar Bratt, a former child star who’s grown up to become obsessed with the character he played in the ’80s. He proves to be Gru’s most formidable nemesis to date. The team who brought you Despicable Me and the biggest animated hits of 2013 and 2015, Despicable Me 2 and Minions, returns to continue the adventures of Gru, Lucy, their adorable daughters—Margo, Edith and Agnes—and the Minions. Despicable Me 3, directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda, co-directed by Eric Guillon, and written by Cinco Paul & Ken Daurio, will be released in theaters on June 30, 2017. The animated film is produced by Illumination’s Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy, and executive produced by Chris Renaud.
The Mower Minions short film stars the iconic Minions, who first appeared in the blockbuster Despicable Me series and who most recently starred in 2015’s massive hit Minions, which grossed more than $1.15 billion at the global box office and became the second-biggest animated title of all time. Continuing the unpredictable adventures of Gru’s curious and subversively sweet band of yellow brothers, Mower Minions represents the first time ever that Illumination has released a short film theatrically.
“It’s been a year since ‘Minions’ appeared on movie screens, and will be another year until they show up in ‘Despicable Me 3’ next summer. Fans are always asking us for more content with the Minions, so the timing felt right for them to star in an all-new short film right before audiences experience Illumination’s newest original film, The Secret Life of Pets,” said Meledandri. “The theatrical release of this short serves as an opportunity for some of the most talented storytellers, visual development artists, colorists and story artists in the Illumination family to flex their creative muscles and create a new piece of content for the big screen.”