After a hiatus of more than a decade, the world's favorite fictitious British inventor (or possibly second after Q from James Bond) and his lovable canine sidekick are making a comeback. Today as part of its ongoing partnership with Aardman Animations Netflix announced the arrival of a new Wallace & Gromit movie and the long-awaited sequel to Chicken Run.
Due out sometime in 2023, Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget picks up after Ginger and Rocky's daring escape with the hatching of the couple's new chick Molly at their new island sanctuary home. And while Julia Sawalha and Mel Gibson won't be reprising their roles as the leading chickens, Dawn of the Nugget's cast will still feature some big-name stars including Thandie Newton (Ginger), Zachary Levi (Rocky) and Bella Ramsey (Molly), the latter of whom is also set to play Ellie in HBO's upcoming live-action TV adaptation of The Last of Us.
As for the still-untitled Wallace & Gromit movie, original series creator Nick Park will be returning as director featuring a story written by Park and Mark Burton (Madagascar, The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Shaun of the Sheep Movie). Slated to arrive almost two decades after The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Wallace and Gromit's second feature-length film revolves around Wallace's latest invention: a "smart gnome" that has developed a mind of its own. Queue the hijinx.
Notably, unlike Dawn of the Nugget which will be a worldwide exclusive on Netflix when it starts streaming sometime next year, the new Wallace & Gromit movie will debut first on the BBC in the UK before becoming available on Netflix in all other regions sometime in 2024.
With Aardman and Netlix's stop-motion musical Robin Robin having been recently shortlisted for the Oscar's in the animated short film category, it's nice to see even more claymation movies get the green light-especially after the bomb that was 2018's Early Man. That said, with the original Chicken Run and The Curse of the Were-Rabbit having already claimed the number one and two spots as the highest-grossing stop-motion animated films of all time, Aardman Studios might have a hard time competing for attention in a time when traditional computer-animated films have dominated the box office.