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Chicken Run: a culture clash of two companies

Simon Brew Feb 21, 2018

The production of Chicken Run brought together two companies with very different styles...

It had been quite a journey from just off the M5 in Bristol, to Los Angeles and the Academy Awards. But for British animation company Aardman, it was a journey that was taken reasonably regularly. Nick Park, for his Creature Comforts and Wallace & Gromit short films, was collecting regular statuettes, and at the of writing, he has four on his mantelpiece.

The frequent awards attentions required equally frequent journeys to the States. And on one such visit, Park – along with Aardman co-founder Peter Lord, amongst others – found themselves in the company of both Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg.

It was the right coincidence at the right time. At this stage, Spielberg and Katzenberg had just set up their hugely ambitious new studio, DreamWorks Skg (along with David Geffen). Katzenberg was to head up the animation division,
See full article at Den of Geek »

Five Things You Didn’t Know about Aardman Animations

The biggest name in Claymation is Aardman Animations. Also known as Aardman Studios (or simply Aardman), they are a Bristol-based British Animation studio. Their most famous works are Wallace & Gromit, Flushed Away, and Chicken Run (each of which made use of their handcrafted Claymation techniques). Their most recent release is called Early Man. It focuses on a band of cavemen who survive an asteroid colliding with the Earth. Afterwards, they accidentally invent soccer – setting the stage for a classic underdog sports story. It has been well received so far and should join the ranks of the rest of

Five Things You Didn’t Know about Aardman Animations
See full article at TVovermind.com »

Cinemaholics #52: Black Panther Review

This week on the show, the Cinemaholics review Black Panther, the newest Marvel Cinematic Universe film directed by Ryan Coogler and starring Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan and Lupita Nyong’o. The movie has absolutely stormed the box office and collected tons of glowing reviews, but are the Cinemaholics fully onboard for this adventure into Wakanda? Tune in to find out!

Later on, the gang talks about Early Man, a new claymation film from Aardman Animation, the makers of Chicken Run, Wallace and Gromit and many other beloved releases, while Jon gives us a sneak peak of Game Night, an upcoming comedy starring Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams.

Maveryke, meanwhile, discusses the spooky new Netflix original The Ritual, which is now streaming, and Will shares the laughs he had with Chris Rock’s Netflix comedy special Tamborine. Finally, Adonis Gonzalez unpacks the recently released fighting game Dragon Ball FighterZ.

If you like what you hear,
See full article at We Got This Covered »

Early Man Review: Bend It Like Cavemen

Early Man is the latest movie from Aardman Animations, the British-based studio best known for producing stop-motion films such as Chicken Run and Shaun the Sheep Movie. Over the years, they’ve earned a reputation as a favorite among animation enthusiasts, picking up a plethora of accolades and awards. Early Man director Nick Park is one of their most decorated members, having won an Oscar for his work on Aardman’s 2005 offering, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. With Park tackling the studio’s most ambitious project to date, the hope was that it could emerge as a modern classic of its genre, but the film doesn’t quite get there. Early Man is technically-impressive and boasts strong visuals, but its simple story holds it back from reaching its full potential.
See full article at Screen Rant »

Nick Park Discusses His Return to Directing With Aardman’s Stop-Motion ‘Early Man’

Nick Park Discusses His Return to Directing With Aardman’s Stop-Motion ‘Early Man’
Four-time Oscar winner Nick Park is back on the big screen with Aardman Animations’ “Early Man,” his first directing effort in a while, which opens wide in the U.S. on Friday.

The tale of a peaceful band of valley-dwelling Stone Agers who must fight to win back their verdant home from the more advanced Bronze Age humans in a high-stakes soccer match is Park’s first feature-length solo directing effort and one of his few projects that don’t star his beloved Wallace & Gromit characters. It features the voices of Eddie Redmayne as the good-natured cave man Dug; Maisie Williams as Goona, a Bronze Age girl with her own soccer aspirations; and Tom Hiddleston as Lord Nooth, the pompous Bronze Age governor who is bent on turning the tribe’s beloved valley into his latest mine.

Park first came up for the idea of a cave man character almost a decade ago. “I think I
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Why Tom Hiddleston and Eddie Redmayne don’t sound like themselves in Early Man

Often when celebrities provide the voices for animated characters, they sound exactly like their famous selves. Even Shrek is reminiscent of Mike Myers’ famous Scottish characters. Tom Hiddleston and Eddie Redmayne don’t sound anything like themselves in Early Man. The animated film from the creators of Wallace and Gromit and Chicken Run, Early Man stars Redmayne as Dug, a caveman who tries to help his tribe evolve. Perhaps Dug is what Redmayne sounded like as a teenager, before we knew him. “He asked me how old is Dug?” Early Man director Nick Park said. “I said about 15 and he...read more
See full article at Monsters and Critics »

'Early Man' Review: Animated Caveman-Soccer Comedy Shoots, Sort-Of Scores

Many eons ago, when the Earth was young and stop-motion dinosaurs battled tooth and tusk on the plains – let's call it the pre-Pleistocene era – a meteor plummeted from the sky. The aftermath, known as the Cretaceous–Tertiary extinction, wiped out our giant-lizard friends; Early Man, the latest from the English animation house Aardman, suggests that an even bigger gamechanging moment in the planet's history occurred. Somewhere in the area that would one day be blessed with the regal name "Manchester" – per a disclaimer, "around lunch-time," a joke that carbon-dates back to prehistoric times – a random,
See full article at Rolling Stone »

The Preview Reel: Black Panther and Early Man

Welcome to this week’s “Preview Reel” column, wherein we look at the week’s upcoming wide-release movies. Fifty Shades Freed ended the franchise on a high note with a first-place finish, but its reign will be short-lived with a new Marvel film storming into theaters. Black Panther is riding a huge wave of hype as early reactions have it pegged as one of the best superhero movies ever, but there is one other wide-release in Aardman AnimationsEarly Man. Black Panther will easily win the week, but are both worth seeing this weekend?

Black Panther

What we are excited about: This is more than just the typical Marvel movie. Black Panther is an important movie for so many people on many levels. As the weeks have been building to the release, it really does feel like the film is having a cultural impact, while also looking undoubtedly cool. The
See full article at CinemaNerdz »

‘Early Man’ Review: Cavemen & Soccer A Match In Aardman’s Latest Delight

For me, if an animated film has Aardman’s name behind it, I’m there. Even if bigger entities like Disney/Pixar, DreamWorks and others are guaranteed box office, Aardman is guaranteed delight. The force behind films including Chicken Run, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit, Shaun The Sheep Movie, and Pirates! have taken their stop-motion magic and applied it to another winner. As I say in my video review above, and to put it in the simplest terms, Early Man is…
See full article at Deadline »

‘Isle of Dogs’: Everything You Need to Know About Wes Anderson’s New Stop-Motion Movie

‘Isle of Dogs’: Everything You Need to Know About Wes Anderson’s New Stop-Motion Movie
Wes Anderson is returning to the big screen after a four-year hiatus, and cinephiles are predictably over the moon with anticipation. For his first feature since “The Grand Budapest Hotel” became a box office hit and a four-time Oscar winner, Anderson is going back to the stop-motion style he perfected in “Fantastic Mr. Fox.” His latest is a canine-filled adventure called “Isle of Dogs” that set to be released on March 23 courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures.

Read More:‘Isle of Dogs’: 25 Striking Shots From Wes Anderson’s Stop-Motion Tale

Anderson has only tried his hand at animation once before with “Fox,” but that gamble ended up being a huge success. Not only was “Fox” nominated for the Best Animated Feature Oscar, but it was also named the second best animated film of the 21st century by IndieWire. Can Anderson strike stop-motion lightning twice? The odds are in his favor.
See full article at Indiewire »

Review: Early Man (2018)

In many ways Aardman Animation and director/innovator Nick Park have done for Claymation and British stop-motion animation in the last few decades, what Ray Harryhausen did for the art as a whole in earlier eras of cinema advancement. In the history of this filmmaking technique these names are heroes and their work is timeless, cherished and true poetry in (stop)motion. From Wallace & Gromit and Creature Comforts to Chicken Run and Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists, this studio’s body of work is revered and consistent. So naturally expectations are high with every new project, let alone the first feature in nearly 15 years to be directed by Nick Park. Thankfully, Early Man is another win to scratch onto the Aardman slate.

Taking their own brand of British barminess to the prehistoric world, Early Man is set at the dawn of time – just outside Manchester – with an opening sequence
See full article at The Cultural Post »

Early Man movie review: primordial goop

MaryAnn’s quick take… A huge disappointment, crude and simple compared to Aardman’s earlier, more sophisticated and multilayered work. No satire or subversion, just a bog-standard triumph-of-the-underdog story. I’m “biast” (pro): I’m a huge Aardman fan

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto) women’s participation in this film

(learn more about this)

It breaks my heart to say this, because I’ve been such a huge fan of animator Nick Park, but his latest years-in-the-making claymation opus, Early Man, simply isn’t very good. The lovingly handcrafted stop-motion animation, with its distinctive character design that is both goofy and charming, is intact, as you’d expect: that is Park’s trademark. But I did rather think that smart humor — subversive and satirical and also somehow magically heartwarming — was also part of what made his work so special.
See full article at FlickFilosopher »

'Darkest Hour' nudges out 'Coco' at UK box office

The Greatest Showman and Call Me By Your Name post impressive holds.

Source: Universal

Darkest Hour

UK Top Five Rank Film / Distributor Weekend Gross (Fri-Sun) Running Total Week 1 Darkest Hour (Universal) £2.64m £15.19m 3 2 Coco (Disney) £2.33m £8.18m 2 3 Maze Runner: The Death Cure (Fox) £2.24m £2.24m 1 4 The Greatest Shownman (Fox) £2.04m £19.6m 5 5 Early Man (Studiocanal) £2.02m £2.02m 1

Today’s Gbp to Usd conversion rate – 1.41

Universal

In its third week, awards contender Darkest Hour returned to top of the UK box office with another strong hold, dropping a slim 19% with Fri-Sun takings of £2.64m. The film has now crossed the £15m mark, currently sitting on £15.19m, making it director Joe Wright’s highest grossing release in the UK.

Disney

Pixar animation Coco dropped marginally behind table-topper Darkest Hour in its second week, posting £2.33m. Looking at the Fri-Sun from its opening weekend, that’s a moderate drop of 30%. The film now sits on £8.18m.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi added £325,000 this
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Video: Top 6 Aardman Movie Characters

Aardman have been producing lovable characters with their distinctive stop-motion animation utilising clay for nearly 50 years now. Whether it be the old-school days of the original Wallace and Gromit TV shorts or even the cheeky Morph character from the 70s, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t fallen for one of their characters. With the upcoming release of their latest instalment Early Man, we have decided to look at some of the best characters Aardman have created since their clay creations hit the big screen…

6. Mr Bobo – The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists! (2012)

The studio clearly has a soft spot for animated animals as in all of their feature films they are depicted with human levels of intelligence. In fact, as with Mr Bobo in The Pirates!, our furry friends are often given a superior level of wits and capability than their human counterparts. As the
See full article at The Cultural Post »

Early Man: Aardman goes prehistoric with moustache moodboards and claymation football

Nick Park has created another stop-motion masterpiece. We go behind the scenes with stars Eddie Redmayne and Tom Hiddleston, and ask Park what’s next for Wallace and Gromit

Deep in the bowels of Bristol’s Aztec West studios, Aardman Animations animator Grant Maisey is exhibiting the fruits of a day’s labour. “This is where I’ve got to at the moment,” he says, pressing play on his desktop. A clip shows a small claymation figure striking a gong. It lasts about three or four seconds. “... aaaand that’s a day’s work.” In total, the scene Maisey is filming contains 340 frames – about 14 seconds’ worth – “so that should take me another two days”, he says surprisingly cheerfully.

Such is the lot for an employee at Aardman, a studio seemingly founded to redefine the word “painstaking”. This is the studio, after all, who willingly – or perhaps wilfully – continue to make
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Exclusive: legendary filmmaker Nick Park on his new movie Early Man

  • HeyUGuys
Author: Stefan Pape

You would think that having won four Oscars may have the ability to change a person, but not Nick Park. The visionary behind Aardman animations, and the likes of Wallace & Gromit and Chicken Run, is one of the most down to earth, nicest blokes you could wish to meet. And fortunately for us, we did.

His latest venture is Early Man, and we asked about the genesis for the project, and why they opted for football to play such a big role in the narrative. We also discuss the sense of accomplishment that comes with presenting a film of this nature, and what attracted Park to the cast, which consists of Eddie Redmayne, Tom Hiddleston and Maisie Williams. Finally we spoke about the next Aardman endeavour, with Shaun the Sheep 2 on the horizon.

Watch the full interview below…

Synopsis

Set at the dawn of time, when prehistoric
See full article at HeyUGuys »

‘Early Man’ Review: Dir. Nick Park (2018)

Early Man review: Legendary stop-motion helmer Nick Park directs his first feature since The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit.

Early Man review by Andrew Gaudion.

Early Man review

An Aardman animated feature is always something to be cherished. The studio behind Wallace & Gromit, Chicken Run, and Shaun the Sheep understandably take a long time to release a film, otherwise you wouldn’t have that ever so charming claymation feel, feel being the operative word as it is endlessly endearing seeing the fingerprints of the animators within the movement of characters. Early Man is extra special as it marks Wallace & Gromit creator Nick Park’s first foray into stop-motion since the Wallace and Gromit short A Matter of Loaf and Death. Early Man, unfortunately, doesn’t quite hit the heights of the Oscar winner’s past glories, but that doesn’t mean there still isn’t plenty to enjoy from Park’s return.
See full article at The Hollywood News »

Nick Park interview: Early Man, Aardman, The Wrong Trousers, The Beano

Simon Brew Jan 25, 2018

We chat to the multi-Oscar-winner Nick Park, about his first feature film as director in over a decade, Early Man...

Nick Park has more Oscars than I’ve got pairs of shoes. He’s created characters that mean something to a huge number of people. And yet when I told him, just before our interview, how much I’d enjoyed his new movie, Early Man, he looked taken aback. And then genuinely appreciative. I’m not sure why that should surprise me, given how much Park clearly sinks into his work. But also, the surprise that somebody had liked his movie seemed genuine. Pre-release nerves are funny things.

Still, as he stirred his freshly poured cup of ginger tea, he settled down for a chat…

I wrote on my notes after seeing this film that your film captures the spirit of Whizzer & Chips, Yonderland, Hot-Shot Hamish, Escape To Victory and Ray Harryhausen!
See full article at Den of Geek »

Early Man review

Wallace & Gromit creator Nick Park directs his first full length feature for over a decade. It’s been worth the wait.

The new film from Aardman sets out a very ambitious table of treats in its opening five minutes or so. A stop-frame animated piece, it immediately zeroes in on a prehistoric area of the planet just outside of Manchester. Early Man then starts with a lovely homage to the style of Ray Harryhausen (and more treats await in the end credits), charts the end of the dinosaurs, introduces some furry underpants and covers the early days of football. Oh, and it’s knocked someone off too. That’s efficiency. Proper storytelling efficiency.

Early Man, then, is the hugely enjoyable new film from the sure-to-be-knighted, multi-Oscar winning director Nick Park, who in turn has invented his first collection of totally brand new characters since 2000’s Chicken Run. He’s settled
See full article at Den of Geek »

Tom, Maisie, and Eddie Make the Perfect Trio at the Early Man Premiere

  • Popsugar
Tom, Maisie, and Eddie Make the Perfect Trio at the Early Man Premiere
Tom Hiddleston, Maisie Williams, and Eddie Redmayne stepped out on Sunday night for the premiere of Aardman's Early Man, solidifying their statuses as our favorite new trio. The animation company, responsible for Chicken Run, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, and Arthur Christmas, takes on the Bronze Age in its latest feature film, with the British threesome lending their voices as leads. Eddie Redmayne plays caveman Dug in the film, befriended by Maisie Williams's Goona, a resident of the Bronze Age, which is ruled by none other than Lord Nooth, better known as Tom Hiddleston. On the night of the premiere, Hiddleston stayed true to his character, ruling the red carpet as suavely as ever, while Williams sported another undeniably cool ensemble and Redmayne kept his wife, Hannah Bagshawe, close. Early Man hits theaters on Feb. 16. While your Bronze-Aged anticipation grows until release, read on for the best pictures from the premiere.
See full article at Popsugar »
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