The Great Lion, Aslan, finally called it a day this week. The creator of Narnia, and Lord of several other fantasy worlds has quit his role as ruler of all talking beasts.
A spokesman for Aslan issued a statement today saying that over the years, the pressures of being a Magic Lion-God had taken their toll. "Children are always asking him if they can be King, or to turn their little brother into an Ass." The final straw came last week when furniture giant IKEA enquired about his availability to help launch a new Wardrobe range working alongside Jade Goody as the White Witch.
Aslan's long-time boss, the Emperor-over-the-Sea said; "Naturally we are disappointed to be losing Aslan, however we have several candidates ready to step into his role". Darth Vader, who has been unemployed since "Return of the Jedi" is said to have the right sort of voice. Other candidates included Jermaine Jackson, however his strong sympathetic voice may be considered as too wimpy for Aslan.
Aslan (who has already died once) will retire to live with two lionesses at Chester Zoo following a veterinary examination. A source has also indicated that he will need delousing. Narnia fans may recall that his last shave was about 1,000 years ago.