The Water Babies (film)
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|The Water Babies|
|Directed by||Lionel Jeffries|
|Produced by||Peter Shaw|
|Screenplay by||Michael Robson
Lionel Jeffries (additional material)
|Based on||The Water-Babies, A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby
by Charles Kingsley
|Music by||Phil Coulter|
|Edited by||Peter Weatherley|
|Distributed by||Pethurst International Ltd.|
The Water Babies is a 1978 live action-animated feature film, very loosely based on the book The Water-Babies, A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby by Charles Kingsley. The film is directed by Lionel Jeffries.
When a 12-year-old chimney sweep is wrongfully blamed for being a thief, he makes a run for it and ends up jumping into a violent river. There he encounters a civilisation of anthropomorphic underwater creatures. Before he can return to the surface and clear his name, however, he must help rescue his new friends, the Water Babies, from their nemesis. Featured voices include those of James Mason, Bernard Cribbins and Tommy Pender. The film starts and ends similarly to the book, though in the book Tom actually dies, and is only allowed above the sea on a temporary basis. The movie also adds a whole new subplot, involving a Killer Shark, an Electric Eel and the mythical Kraken, who decides whether or not Tom can return to the surface. There are also several invented characters, whom Tom befriends on his quest: Jock, a Scottish lobster, Terence, an effeminate starstruck seahorse, and Claude, a foppish French swordfish.
- James Mason as Mr. Grimes/Voice of Killer Shark
- Bernard Cribbins as Masterman/Voice of Eel
- Billie Whitelaw as Mrs. Doasyouwouldbedoneby/Old Crone/Mrs. Tripp/Woman in Black/Water Babies 'Gate Keeper'
- Joan Greenwood as Lady Harriet
- David Tomlinson as Sir John/Voice of Polar Bear
- Tommy Pender as Tom
- Samantha Gates as Elly/Voice of Ariadne the Water Baby
- Paul Luty as Sladd/Voice of Claude the Swordfish
- Jon Pertwee as Salmon/Jock the Lobster/Kraken
- Olive Gregg
- Lance Percival as Terence the Sea Horse
- David Jason as Cyril the Walrus
- Cass Allan
- Liz Proud
- Una Stubbs
Filmed on location in Yorkshire, England. Primarily based at Denton Hall, Wharfedale, early scenes are filmed in the city of York.
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