15 December 2012 4:02 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Children's laureate Julia Donaldson happy with BBC version of her book, which largely eschews tricks that have made Peter Jackson's Hobbit film controversial

When your leading characters are a witch, a broomstick and a jealous cat, it might seem odd to be worried about "keeping it real", but children's laureate Julia Donaldson and the creators of Room on the Broom, the BBC's specially commissioned Christmas Day film, were determined to do just that.

The half-hour animation of Donaldson's beloved picture book has now earned her the coveted after-lunch slot on BBC1 for the third time, making The Gruffalo author a seasonal institution. But whatever the age of her intended audience, or the improbability of the plot, the need to conjure up a convincing fantasy world was paramount, she said, in an age when Hobbit-style technical innovation can overwhelm the viewer.

"What is so lovely about the film is the »

- Vanessa Thorpe

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