Jess Commons | Deputy Editor | Thursday, 28 April 2016

Netflix Are Remaking The Watership Down Movie. Prepare To Relive Your Childhood Nightmares

Netflix Are Remaking The Watership Down Movie. Prepare To Relive Your Childhood Nightmares

The Debrief: Watership Down, the film that traumatised young kids is being remade by Netflix and BBC 1 and is set to star John Boyega, Gemma Arterton, Nicholas Hoult and Ben Kingsley. Cool.

It's one of the great mysteries of our generation: why were we all shown rabbit snuff film Watership Down as children?

The film, which recently sparked complaints when it was shown on Channel 5 from parents thinking it was a film about fluffy rabbits is an adaptation of the 1972 novel which, as you well know, is about anything but fluffy little rabbits.

Now, the film/book is being remade with the help of Netflix and BBC1. And, rather than bringing back John Hurt as a voice actor, this new version is set to star the worthy voices of John Boyega, Gemma Arterton, James McAvoy, Anne-Marie Duff, Nicholas Hoult and Ben Kingsley.

If you can cast your mind back to what was undoubtedly one of the most traumatising times of your childhood, you'll recall that the story of Watership Down is about a group of rabbits, led by Fiver a 'seer' who has apocalyptic visions, as they try and find themselves a new home. Theirs is destroyed by evil human developers. Many bunnies die.

Along the way to their new home (spoiler: it's Watership Down, Fiver forsees it), the group deal with multiple bunny murders at the hands of dogs, cats and humans. Oh, there's an (un)healthy bout of myxomatosis too (if you grew up in the city or are too young to remember myxamatosis, do yourself a favour and NEVER GOOGLE IT - seriously, the farmer down the road from us used to get his horses to stamp on the bunnies to put them out of their misery, it was fucking grim).

Obviously, despite the traumatisation that came from watching the film, it's still much loved by all (apart from those people that complained to Channel 5). Matthew Read, the commissioning editor at BBC said, 'Before there was Harry Potter there was Watership Down, Richard Adams’s novel is one of the most successful books of all time and one of the biggest selling books in history. It is fantastic to have the opportunity to bring a modern classic to a mainstream BBC1 audience with such an incredible roster of actors alongside the talented team overseeing the animation. This fantastic take on the novel will unite the whole family, and bring this classic story to a new generation.'


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Tags: Film, TV