After 27 years in the anchor chair of CBC Canada’s newscast, The National, veteran newsman Peter Mansbridge is taking on a different kind of newscast in an animated film role.
The Canadian TV legend has lent his distinctive voice to the character Peter Moosebridge, a moose and co-anchor of the ZTV News who’s become a trusted source of news for the inhabitants of “Zootopia.” The character was specifically written with Canada in mind and to be voiced by a Canadian, which is the first time this has ever been done in a Walt Disney Animation Studios film.
“Some of my earliest television memories involve watching ‘The Wonderful World of Disney’ on CBC,” Mansbridge said when it was announced that he had the role. “Also, as a long-time fan of Disney’s animated films, I was immediately intrigued when I received the proposal for this cameo role, of a newscaster no less. These films were part of my childhood, and now I see my kids and grand kids watching them.”
According to Greg Mason, V.P. of Marketing Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Canada, having Peter on board for this prestigious role was smooth sailing, “We are so excited to have a moose among the residents of ‘Zootopia’ and could not be more thrilled that, in the ultimate casting coup, we were able to convince the pre-eminent voice in Canadian news to accept this assignment. Not surprisingly, Peter was a natural and we think audiences will delight in seeing Canada represented in “Peter Moosebridge.”
The modern mammal metropolis of Zootopia is a city like no other. Comprised of habitat neighborhoods like ritzy Sahara Square and frigid Tundratown, it’s a melting pot where animals from every environment live together—a place where no matter what you are, from the biggest elephant to the smallest shrew, you can be anything. But when rookie Officer Judy Hopps (voice of Ginnifer Goodwin) arrives, she discovers that being the first bunny on a police force of big, tough animals isn’t so easy. Determined to prove herself, she jumps at the opportunity to crack a case, even if it means partnering with a fast-talking, scam-artist fox, Nick Wilde (voice of Jason Bateman), to solve the mystery. Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Zootopia,” a comedy-adventure directed by Byron Howard (“Tangled,” “Bolt”) and Rich Moore (“Wreck-It Ralph,” “The Simpsons”), and produced by Clark Spencer (“Wreck-It Ralph,” “Lilo & Stitch”).
I had the honour and privilege of speaking with Peter Mansbridge about his “pivotal” role in Zootopia and he was nothing short of charming and insightful!
Zootopia opens in theatres on March 4th.