Aardman is officially developing a sequel to Chicken Run after nearly 20 years. The 2000 original earned $225 million worldwide, becoming the most successful stop-motion animated film of all time, a record it still holds to this day.
Wallace and Gromit creator Nick Park and Aardman co-founder Peter Lord, who directed the first film, will not be returning to helm the sequel. Peter Lord will be executive producing with fellow Aardman co-founder David Sproxton. Sam Fell, who earned Oscar and BAFTA nominations for Laika’s ParaNorman and also helmed Aardman’s Flushed Away, is attached to direct. Paul Kewley (Shaun the Sheep Movie) will be producing. Original writers Karey Kirkpatrick and John O’Farrell have reunited to pen the screenplay.
There’s no word on the plot yet, or whether the cast, such as Mel Gibson as Rocky and Julia Sawalha as Ginger, will be returning.
One can only hope that composers John Powell and Harry Gregson-Williams return to bring back their mesmerizing, kazoo-filled score.
The U.K. animation powerhouse is developing the sequel alongside StudioCanal, Aardman’s most recent distributing partner, and Pathe, who co-financed the original with DreamWorks Animation and distributed it in Europe.
Inspired by The Great Escape, Chicken Run tellsthe story of a group of plucky chickens attempting to escape certain death at the hands of their evil farm owner. The film was critically acclaimed, with a 97% Rotten Tomatoes score alongside BAFTA and Golden Globe nominations. The Academy Award for Best Animated Feature would not be awarded for another two years.
Chicken Run 2 will likely go into production at Aardman’s studio in Bristol after it wraps on Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon, the sequel to 2015’s Shaun the Sheep Movie, which is set for release in 2019.
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