28 year old Kristen Bell (NBC’s Heroes) has just been added to the voice cast of the forthcoming animated movie Astro Boy. Bell, who for some reason passes as every fanboy’s favorite twenty-something actress, thus joins Freddie Highmore (The Spiderwick Chronicles), Nicolas Cage (Bangkok Dangerous), Bill Nighy (Pirates Of The Caribbean 2 & 3), Donald Sutherland (Fool’s Gold), Eugene Levy (the American Pie films) and Nathan Lane (Swing Vote), among others.
The long-gestating movie is of course based on the manga by legendary artist/animator/doctor Osamu Tezuka (Metropolis), and is directed by David Bowers (Flushed Away) through Imagi Animation (TMNT). The story, adapted by Timothy Harris (Space Jam), goes like this according to Wikipedia:
Set in futuristic Metro City, Astro Boy is a young robot with incredible powers created by a brilliant scientist in the image of the son he has lost. Unable to fulfill the grieving man’s expectations, Astro Boy embarks on a journey in search of acceptance, experiencing betrayal and a netherworld of robot gladiators, before he returns to save Metro City and reconcile with the father who had rejected him.
Astro Boy is expected to release in 2009, but a date has yet to be set.