Mr Men go to Hollywood with the studio behind Ice Age

Shawn Levy will produce the first in a series of Mr Men adventures

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The classic Mr Men and Little Miss characters are heading for Hollywood, after the rights to the children’s favourites were secured by Fox Animation, the studio behind the Ice Age and Rio franchises.

Shawn Levy, who produced and directed the Night at the Museum films starring Ben Stiller, will produce the first in a series of Mr Men adventures for the big screen.

The popular books were the creation of Roger Hargreaves, who came up with Mr Tickle when his young son Adam asked what a tickle looked like.

Hargreaves wrote and illustrated his first book in 1971 and the series went on to feature 85 characters. More than 120 million copies have been sold, with translations in 15 different languages.

In 2011, the rights to Mr Men and Little Miss were acquired by Sanrio, the creators of Hello Kitty, which licensed them to Fox for the big screen.

Vanessa Morrison, the president of Fox Animation, said: “The Mr Men and Little Miss characters have delighted readers from around the world for decades.”

The books were turned into a children’s BBC TV animation series, narrated by Dad’s Army actor Arthur Lowe, which ran from 1974 to 1985. A writer and director for the Mr Men film has yet to be announced.