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Netflix, Aardman build new Chicken Run

Global streaming giant Netflix has confirmed it is working on a sequel to 2000 stop-motion animation movie Chicken Run with the film’s original creator, Aardman Animations.

Netflix UK and Ireland tweeted yesterday that a sequel was in the works 20 years after the original hit the big screen, with production starting next year at the UK studio’s Bristol base.

The original Chicken Run focused on a group of hens who put their trust in a duplicitous rooster to lead them out of captivity at an evil chicken farm. The sequel will be centred around Molly, a new character and daughter of previous leads Rocky and Ginger on a chicken-friendly island where the flock now lives.

Mel Gibson, who voiced Rocky in the original, will have his role re-cast after actor Winona Ryder made allegations about the Hollywood actor’s past conduct, including racist remarks.

Peter Lord, who directed the original with Nick Park, said at the Anecy Animation Festival yesterday: “We’ve got the perfect story, and the relationship with Netflix is kind of perfect as well because they celebrate the filmmaker and are so filmmaker-friendly. I feel now we can make the Chicken Run sequel we want to, the one we really care about.”

In related news, Netflix has renewed its sports documentary series Last Chance U for a sixth season, but is changing the sport it focuses on.

Last Chance U, the fifth season of which hits the streamer in July, has so far focused on American Football college players but will switch to basketball for its sixth run, which is due out in 2021.

Boardwalk Pictures, Condé Nast Entertainment, Endgame Entertainment and One Potato Productions are behind the franchise.

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