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Martin Freeman stars in 'Saving Santa'

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Watson in The Hound of the Baskervilles

© BBC

Martin Freeman will lend his voice to the lead character in Saving Santa.

Noel Clarke, Joan Collins, Tim Curry, Pam Ferris, Craig Fairbrass and Chris Barrie will also feature in the cast of the festive animation, reports Variety.

Gateway Films' £5 million ($7.8 million) film marks the Adulthood and Shank producers' first forays into animation.

The movie will centre on Freeman as a clumsy elf, who becomes Father Christmas's only hope after the location of his headquarters is discovered by a ruthless villain.

Ricky Roxburgh has written the script and Leon Joosen is attached to direct.

Freeman has said that he was initially uncertain about the BBC's acclaimed modern-day adaptation of Sherlock Holmes, in which he recently reprised his role as John Watson.

He will soon be seen as Bilbo Baggins in the first part of Peter Jackson's adaptation of The Hobbit, appearing as part of an ensemble cast which includes his Sherlock co-star Benedict Cumberbatch.

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