Why Paddington star Hugh Bonneville has hailed Ukraine's president Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Hugh Bonneville hailed President Zelensky for voicing 'Paddington' in Ukraine. (Getty Images)
Hugh Bonneville hailed president Volodymyr Zelenskyy for voicing Paddington in Ukraine. (Getty Images)

Paddington star Hugh Bonneville has praised Ukraine's resident Volodymyr Zelenskyy after learning he was the voice of Paddington Bear in the Ukrainian version of the films.

Zelenskyy was an actor and comedian before moving into politics in 2018. Ukraine is currently under attack by Russia.

Bonneville tweeted: "Until today I had no idea who provided the voice of @paddingtonbear in Ukraine. Speaking for myself, thank you, President Zelenskiy. #PaddingtonBear."

Read more: Lady Gaga and stars show support for Ukraine at SAG Awards

He added: "For those across the world who cherish the values of Paddington…", and shared a link to Unicef's campaign to help children in danger around the world through funds raised by selling Paddington merchandise.

Hugh Grant — who stars as villainous actor Phoenix Buchanan in Paddington 2 — also shared a Paddington meme on Twitter which said: "If you invade, you won't see our backs, you'll see our teeth."

The Notting Hill star — who has since deleted the tweet — captioned the image: "One of my lines in Paddington 2 was 'Exit bear, pursued by an actor.'"

Paddington 2 (Credit: StudioCanal)
Paddington 2 (Credit: StudioCanal)

Ben Whishaw is the voice of the marmalade-loving bear in the hit film adaptation of Michael Bond's books starring Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Julie Walters and Jim Broadbent.

The films were dubbed into several languages and released around the world, with Zelenskyy voicing the cuddly bear in Ukraine.

EDITORIAL USE ONLY Hugh Grant during the filming for the Graham Norton Show at BBC Studioworks 6 Television Centre, Wood Lane, London, to be aired on BBC One on Friday evening. Picture date: Thursday November 19, 2020. Photo credit should read: PA Media on behalf of So TV/PA Wire
Hugh Grant has deleted his tweet about the Ukrainian president voicing Paddington. (PA)

Zelensky also competed in the Ukrainian version of Strictly Come Dancing, called Dancing With The Stars.

Stars of Hollywood paid tribute to Zelenskyy at the Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Succession star Cox, 75, took the chance to pay tribute to the Ukraine as he accepted the Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble award for the hit HBO show.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy was an actor before he moved into politics. (Getty Images)

He said: "The president of Ukraine was a comic, you know, he was a wonderful comic performer.

"And we should respect that for him, and to come to the presidency is amazing."

Read more: Strictly's James Jordan and Shirley Ballas clash on social media over Ukraine

And Michael Keaton said: 'We have a fellow actor in Zelenskyy, who deserves some credit tonight for fighting the fight."

Russian president Vladimir Putin began an invasion of Ukraine on 24 February.

Watch: Paddington 3 is due to be filmed this year