Laika is bizzy bizzy bizzy making monsters…
Shuffling into action following the success of CORALINE and a two picture deal with FOCUS Pictures, Laika Studio is busily exhuming the first of which is PARANORMAN, a comedy/ thriller about a small town overrun with zombies. This ought to make for freaky stop-motion fun!
Should be entertaining, and interesting as stop-motion animation, zombies, ghouls and the supernatural seem to go together oh-so-well. Spooky / fun stop motion has a long history, with Tim Burton being a sort of poster boy of the last generation. Burton’s shown up repeatedly with a myriad of creepy classics, starting with his ground-breaking short film Vincent. From there he took down the house with Beetlejuice, then clambered into stop motion feature filmmaking with Henry Selick for Nightmare before Christmas. Director Henry Selick ran solo with James and the Giant Peach (those scary sisters- egad!) and onto pushing the supernatural, pschotropic envelope with Coraline.
Directed by Sam Fell (The Tale of Despereaux & Flushed Away) and Chris Butler, storyboard supervisor on Coraline. Butler wrote the original screenplay. PARANORMAN producer Arianne Sutner (The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou ) will co-produce the feature with Travis Knight (Phil Knight’s son– you know, the founder of running shoe giant, Nike? His kid runs Laika).
LAIKA (formerly known as Will Vinton Studios), has an interesting history as a producer of top-notch stop motion animated series and films- have a look at their roster of commercial director’s reels- great work all around. In that, it’s a treat to have a look at the place from an ‘outside’ perspective, so I thought this little clip would be of interest for anyone not embedded in the stop motion animation community, but are curious nonetheless. Check out the Laika Virtual Studio Tour!