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Adventures of Paddington with Ben Wishaw stars Sabrina Newton-Fisher, from Chartham near Canterbury

A schoolgirl from Chartham has been cast alongside James Bond star Ben Whishaw in a new Paddington Bear TV series.

Canterbury Academy pupil Sabrina Newton-Fisher - a self-confessed fan of the marmalade-loving character - auditioned for Adventures of Paddington in her parents' bathroom.

Sabrina Newton-Fisher recording the Adventures of Paddington in the Soho studio. Picture: Nicholas Newton-Fisher
Sabrina Newton-Fisher recording the Adventures of Paddington in the Soho studio. Picture: Nicholas Newton-Fisher

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The 13-year-old will voice Judy Brown in the series and is one of the backing singers on the theme tune - which was written and performed by Gary Barlow.

“I’m really excited to see how the series will look now it’s been all put together," she said.

Sabrina got the call for an audition and had to send in a voice recording.

"I took my iPhone into my parents’ bathroom and recorded my voice as the acoustics are much better there," she said.

Sabrina had three rounds of auditions in London before bagging the role. She plays Mr Brown’s daughter, Judy, in Michael Bond’s tale of Paddington who is adopted by the family after leaving his home in Darkest Peru.

Paddington is voiced by Ben Whishaw in the TV show, following his portrayal of the world-famous bear in two big-screen films in 2014 and 2017.

Sabrina had 23 recording sessions for the series at a studio in London’s Soho.

She added: "I was nervous at first but everyone was really kind so I soon felt relaxed and enjoyed the role.

"I’ve loved Paddington since I can remember and have watched both the movies. I had a bunch of Paddington books where I was younger and remember a favourite story about Paddington enjoying an ice-cream sundae.

"I loved being Judy Brown in the Adventures of Paddington and I’m really hoping that there will be a second series."

Sabrina Newton-Fisher stands by her cartoon character Judy. Picture: Sarah Johns
Sabrina Newton-Fisher stands by her cartoon character Judy. Picture: Sarah Johns

Her love of stage began when she appeared in the musical Oliver! at the Marlowe Theatre in 2014 and from performing in the annual talent show at Chartham Primary School.

The teenager is also a member of Phoenix Performing Arts in Canterbury.

Executive principal of The Canterbury Academy Jon Watson said: "Everyone at The Canterbury Academy is incredibly proud of Sabrina’s role in the Adventures of Paddington series and we are delighted that our elite performing arts programme is supporting her career development.

"The Canterbury Academy offers bespoke, industry-standard training in performing arts that allows pupils to gain professional experience alongside academic qualifications and is increasingly the first choice for young people wanting to break into the competitive industry."

The Adventures of Paddington is on Nick Jr. at 7.30am and 4.30pm every weekday.

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