Michael Bond memorial: Stars gather to celebrate life of Paddington Bear creator

FILM REVIEW Paddington 2

Film Review: Paddington 2

Paddington was "so real" that the bear was seen as a member of their family and "an extension of my father, which means he will always be with us", she said.

HarperCollins Children's Books executive publisher Ann-Janine Murtagh added: "We are deeply honoured to be publishing the final Paddington story from our most cherished author, Michael Bond".

The problem with Michael Bond, his daughter said, was that "women had an unfortunate tendency to fall in love with him". Well, perhaps they came for the bear.

HUGH BONNEVILLE and Stephen Fry were among the names celebrating the life of Paddington Bear creator Michael Bond today.

A memorial service, held at St Paul's Cathedral, saw Bonneville, who plays Mr Brown in the Paddington films, read out messages from fans around the world.

"Fry said Bond often asked himself, "'What would Paddington do?' I think that would be a good tattoo for all of us".

He said of the popularity of the bear: "It was the tension between the anarchy and catastrophe that he caused and the fact he was always dignified and on the side of right, of friendship, warmth and family, without being sentimental or nostalgic".

Actors from the newly released Paddington 2, the latest iteration in the 60-year-old saga of the Peruvian refugee, delivered tributes given by fans after the author's death in June aged 91.

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